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High school internship opportunities open up in spite of pandemic

Posted Monday, Feb. 14, 2022 —

 

Although education has not returned to a pre-pandemic level of normalcy, some things at school are starting to look a little bit more like they are supposed to.

 

For Erin Hart, a senior at Geneva High School, that means spending part of her school day in the North Street School library. When Panther Pride spoke to her last year, Erin had been forced to postpone her elementary library internship plans and remain at the high school — community internships, or even those in other Geneva school buildings, were limited because of restrictions on volunteers and visitors.

 

For Erin, that meant spending her junior year internship in the Geneva High School library, a concession she did not seem to mind. This year, with rules a little less stringent, Erin is able to fulfill her original plan, a post at North Street School.

 

“I like seeing the second through fifth-grade kids,” said Erin after checking a book out for a young student in January.

 

According to North Street School librarian Christine Joslyn, Erin is as popular with the students as they are with her. “I love having Erin here,” said Ms. Joslyn. “The kids who come in get so excited to see somebody different from me, and Erin is always so welcoming. She remembers names better than I do!”

 

“Children love Erin,” agreed Heather Marks, Erin’s long-time aide. “They are very encouraging.” First-day struggles with the book scanner, for example, led to young patrons telling Erin to take her time and congratulating her when she got the hang of it.

 

“We’re just so excited that she can be over here this year,” Mrs. Marks added.

 

North Street School shares the excitement and even featured her on their morning announcements earlier this year.

 

“Not all the kids get to see Erin in the morning,” said Ms. Joslyn, explaining that Erin’s internship runs for 40 minutes every weekday morning. “The story on the announcements let the whole student body know that we have a student intern.” The end result, according to Ms. Joslyn, was not just excitement for Erin, but a bevy of new volunteers who also want to spend time helping check out books. “Now when Erin leaves, I actually have fifth graders who come to help out,” said Ms. Joslyn.

 

Erin, who has been volunteering in libraries since fifth grade, hopes to continue working at them in the future. “I like checking out books,” said Erin.