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Intership profile: Project NEST

January  08, 2014

As an intern, Corinne Walker didn't expect to have such an important leadership role at a non-profit agency working with young mothers-to-be.

(Augustana Photo Bureau/Daisy Hoang '14)

She worked at Project NEST, a prenatal education program that provides incentives and encouragement for women to get prenatal care and education.

Walker initiated new women to the program, ran twice-weekly meetings with them, delegated tasks to the volunteers and did bookkeeping. She presented at six of the meetings last summer over topics related to her major, communication science and disorders (CSD).

She also did bookkeeping and data entry, wrote a grant and organized speakers for the fall months.

"The impact I made on the program surprised me," Walker said. "I was able to help run the organization and make decisions about where the program will go next. I did not expect to have such an important role as a summer intern.

She said that leadership skills she learned in the classroom at Augustana, such as such as working with others and delegating responsibilities, were an asset.

"My favorite part of my internship was connecting with the mothers and gaining their trust," she said. "The mothers we worked with were under a lot of stress, so being a person they could trust and talk to was very rewarding."

Walker, a senior, said she hopes to lead or volunteer at a similar non-profit organization someday. However, her primary goal is to become a speech-language pathologist. In addition to CSD, she is minoring in Spanish for professional use.

"This internship gives the student a chance to see how a non-profit organization runs and participate in all aspects of the organization," she said. "I would recommend the program to anyone who is a self-motivated worker and who would like a rewarding internship that gives him or her independence."