Last weekend I tabled for Mary Mitchell at Wild Life high school for their health fair with some of my colleagues. The new intern for the After School Program, Arianna, came along and was a great help. Sylvia, Ana and Ms. Aleyna were also there. We all work together but for different aspects of the center so our table was full of resources.
Just to talk about Arianna a bit. She started working at the center two weeks ago. During our quick and fun interview process, she shared with me a secret…. ‘I don’t know much English, Ms.’ She seemed very bashful and somewhat ashamed. She was so shy that on her first day of work, she brought in her older sister (who spoke English and worked with me before) to speak on her behalf….(Her sister encouraged her and to her surprise… left her there to fend for herself). Nonetheless, after working around the center for three weeks, Arianna started opening up. She is speaking more and even translating for others!
During the health fair, I turned to Arianna and told her that she was going to table alone for one hour. I gave her quick instructions on what to say to the people and left. When I returned she had a huge smile on her face. She not only spoke to people about the center but got others to sign up for the La Canansta Program and even participated in a raffle and won a tee-shirt!
I have been working with the Pathways to Graduation Internship Placement Program for three years and I enjoy it. I’ve met great people starting with the development coordinator, Ms. Ocean. She does a fantastic job of linking the Mary Mitchell After School Program with great students who work along with the center. Arianna is one of the many students who I get joy in seeing grow and flourish in positive ways.