College Union interns create programming, develop professional skills

From programming to graphics and publicity, much of what goes on behind the scenes of the College Union is credited to the hard work of the eight College Union interns hired each semester.

According to Assistant Director of College Union and Activities Lauren Dougherty, the internship is only a semester-long opportunity due to its competitiveness as well as her desire to provide the opportunity to as many students as possible.

Each semester Dougherty and Director of College Union and Activities Charles Matthews hire four programming interns and four marketing interns in the areas of College Union and Activities, Upstate Escapes and Geneseo Late Knight.

According to programming intern junior Kyle Snyder, the programming interns plan and promote programs hosted by the Union, such as Blue and White Wednesdays. One of Snyder’s contributions to this event was a contest in which students were put into a drawing if they were wearing blue or white.

Marketing intern junior Christopher Pike said that the marketing interns “find different ways to advertise the Union’s activities,” especially through local businesses.

One of Pike’s major projects thus far was working with local businesses and the college to put on the Student Organization Expo.

In addition to planning and advertising programs, the interns hold eight office hours, which often consist of seeking advertising opportunities.

All interns also have access to the Union’s wide array of social media outlets to promote events.

According to Matthews, the interns are not only students who have the qualifications for the internship but show that they have room for growth in the position.

“It’s not just about the programming,” Matthews said. “It’s about, ‘What are you learning from this experience?’”

Pike described the benefits of his internship as having great educational value.

“Not only are you learning more about how the college itself works, but you’re getting real skills that you can use in the real world,” Pike said. “One of the things they really stress in the program is connecting what you learn [from the internship to the classroom].”

According to Snyder, “The interns who receive the internship truly love what the College Union stands for.”

“I wanted to be an intern because I basically live in the Union and it’s my favorite place to go,” Snyder said. “Sometimes I’m in the Union more than I’m in my room.”

Snyder and Pike both said the interns are currently planning more surprises for the Union this semester.