WorldStrides Intern Spotlight: Lasting Impacts

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By WorldStrides Intern, Waverly Nohr.

On her educational journey to graduate with a double major in Foreign Affairs and Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies from the University of Virginia, Waverly Nohr shares how an unanticipated opportunity to work as a WorldStrides intern has made an impact on her professional career. As part of the inaugural group of interns that make up WorldStrides Professional Internship Program, Waverly is working closely with Jessica Smith and Alanna Rankin in the Account Management Department. “I am grateful to have learned alongside my project manager, Alanna Rankin, about the cross-departmental dedication and necessary cooperation involved in coordinating custom educational travel programs. Additionally, my mentor, Jessica Smith Durham, has taken interest in my professional development and encouraged opportunities that will benefit me in my career.” To explain her current role further, Waverly continues, “What I’ve realized is that account management is a lot of maintaining relationships with WorldStrides partners and making sure that trips are coordinated to run smoothly. It involves a lot of talking with clients to make sure that they can have the best trip possible and to establish a relationship that will be long term and mutually beneficial.”  

Learning Opportunities 

Waverly has participated in 2 education-abroad trips throughout her life, one to Scotland and the other to Indonesia. Of these trips, she says, “From my own experience, I know that my exchange year in Indonesia really sparked my interest in traveling.” It was this interest that inspired her to apply for the WorldStrides Professional Internship Program where she, “wanted to see the process of creating a study abroad program.” With many program offerings, WorldStrides has a one-of-a-kind opportunity to provide a variety of educational travel opportunities for participants of all ages. Working with WorldStrides has given Waverly a new perspective into the world of educational travel and into a professional business environment in general. “One unique thing I’ve noticed about this company is that cooperation across departments is necessary and everyone who makes up the team is not only willing to talk to you, but they are interested in learning your story and getting to know you. Additionally, I’ve picked up on the fact that people are passionate about their work at WorldStrides. This is so refreshing for me because it is important to me that I love what I do and can find purpose in my future career.”  

A Variety of Projects and Experiences 

Since beginning her internship, Waverly has had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects and assignments, many of which focus on the planning and execution of the trips. “In my everyday job, I work a lot with custom programs abroad and by getting to see the itineraries for those international trips, I’ve learned how varied of an experience WorldStrides can offer. I think that same logic can be applied to my career, and I am thankful for the unique professional experience I’ve gained.” In addition to her day-to-day tasks, Waverly, along with other interns, get the chance to work in small groups on an executive presentation that is presented at the end of the internship. They also participate in the Choose Earth Certificate program, which includes an eco-challenge where Waverly volunteered at THEARC community center in Washington D.C. and helped in their urban garden.  

Going into detail about the latest project she has been focusing on, Waverly expounds, “I am currently working on the RandomWalks programs for graduate students. This trip allows graduate students to connect with their class before school starts and experience other cultures while doing so,” she says. “RandomWalks are custom programs that are catered for graduate students and led by student leaders, as opposed to professors. RandomWalks trips are a great way for students to get to know each other, especially if you’re an incoming graduate student; they can provide a great trip and bonding experience to many popular destinations, most being outside of the United States.”  

Helping in Unexpected Ways  

When a staffing need arose, Waverly volunteered to travel and to be part of an Envision program, a week-long summer trip for scholars to participate in STEM building activities and workshops. “Throughout this summer, I have had the opportunity to see participants in middle and high schools experience a trip away from home during the Envision programs. With that said, it was cool to be a part of what Envision offered to scholars who may have never independently left home before”. Waverly worked to support program and academic leaders as they taught scholars transferable skills and helped to facilitate growth through a variety of hands-on activities. Waverly helped to create crime scenes for participants in forensics classes, build obstacle courses for those who assembled their own robots, and helped to bring supplies and materials to all other aspects of the program. 

Final thoughts 

As her time as a WorldStrides intern ends, Waverly looks towards her goals and the forthcoming possibilities. “In the future I want to live and work in another country, and I think WorldStrides has been a good steppingstone to achieve that. I am an advocate for educational travel and learning through immersion and interning at WorldStrides has given me time and experience to decide what it is I like to do.” WorldStrides is continuously striving to improve the internship experience along with their many program offerings to help interns, participants, and team members continue to learn in all that they do.  

The WorldStrides Professional Internship Program is dedicated to the promotion and development of the same skills and objectives of all WorldStrides’ travel education programs and opportunities, “…to enable interns to see beyond the workplace and to see the world–and themselves– in new ways.” 

For more information about WorldStrides and all that we offer, visit us as www.worldstrides.com. 

The post WorldStrides Intern Spotlight: Lasting Impacts appeared first on WorldStrides.

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