Quetzali Gomez '23
Summer Plans: Intern, Beacon Place
Hometown: Highwood, IL
Major: Sociology and Spanish
My summer internship was at a non-profit organization in Waukegan, Illinois, named Beacon Place. The organization offers support to students and families in a predominantly Black and Latinx community. Throughout the summer, I connected with eighth graders through rising first years in college with a summer programming experience. The program I worked with specifically is called LAUNCH, and over six weeks, we offered a book club and a current events club and met with students regarding their progress of an online STEAM scavenger hunt. I created, planned, executed and reported on the different opportunities offered to our students, and I worked with my co-worker and supervisor on creating more opportunities and fun learning for the students this summer.
I loved getting to know the students, even if it was through Zoom meetings! The energy and enthusiasm that they gave when we met made the experience that much more memorable. I also think that this opportunity has helped me strengthen my communication and leadership skills. Through this internship, I’ve been able to get a clear sense of the type of leader I am and what I’m capable of doing. Most importantly, I value the connections I’ve made with the staff at Beacon Place and also the students and their families. Although this summer wasn’t what we expected, being at Beacon Place has left me with so many lovely moments I’ll hold dear to my heart.
I think that Holy Cross truly helped me in regard to my confidence and willingness to put myself out there. My first year on The Hill prepared me to be more willing to take risks and taught me the importance of learning from others and others learning from me.
This summer internship has motivated me to go into Public Policy. Throughout this summer, I’ve been able to get to see the disparities regarding the quality of education more closely, and I want to work with others to provide changes that help reflect the huge disparities in the North Shore of Illinois as well as the country. I want to help provide changes to the complex policy issues affecting our communities today.
Click to read more student summer profiles: Paulina Martin ’21, Ramses Taveras ’22, Elizabeth Larkin ’21, Charlie Millard ’22, Mandusu Sidibay ’21, Christopher Smith ’22, Christina Casey ’22, Billy Fitzpatrick ’20, Tatiana Thompson ’22, Katie Knippler ’22, Zach Turner ’21 and Abbey Harris ’21.
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