Our #SummerOfPurpose blog series follows this year’s Cleveland Foundation Summer Interns as they spend 11 weeks working with Cleveland-area nonprofit and public sector organizations. In today’s blog we hear from Nahomy Ortiz-Garcia, who is working with Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center (JDB) and East End Neighborhood House on communications and community engagement projects.
Name: Nahomy Ortiz-Garcia
College: Cleveland State University
Hometown:Born and raised in Puerto Rico, currently living in Cleveland, OH
Internship Host Site: Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center & East End Neighborhood House
What has been the most valuable aspect of your internship experience?
I think the most valuable aspect of my internship experience has been the culture. At both sites I’ve been able to relate and become really passionate about the things I’m working on because I truly care about them. I’ve always loved my Latinx culture and arts, and being able to work at an organization where the sole purpose is to educate people on Latinx culture through the arts has helped me become even more passionate about my work!
What skills did you hope to develop through the internship?
One of the skills that I’ve always wanted to develop more is around social media. Going into it, I had no idea that I would be as hands-on as I am with the social media for Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center, but I’m very grateful for the experience and opportunities to be able to work more on those skills.
When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing around Cleveland?
When I’m not working, I love to read! I love visiting local bookstores or the library.
What are your career goals after college?
I am a college graduate, so my plans were to start an internship and really focus on what aspects of communications I’m most interested in. Being with the Cleveland Foundation, I have learned so much from this opportunity. I’ve learned that I love working with nonprofits, arts, culture, and social media!
How has this internship helped you grow professionally?
Professionally, I think this internship has helped me grow a lot because I’ve been able to network with many people at my two different host sites. All of the people I’ve met have offered great insight into the world of nonprofits – it’s great advice that I’ll always carry with me.
How has this internship helped you grow personally?
Knowing how to communicate with others in a professional environment is so important, and I’ve learned a lot of lessons during this internship on efficient communication through a complete digital internship. Communication is something that is constant and, personally, I will think about these lessons forever.
Where would you take a friend who is visiting Cleveland for the first time?
If I had a friend visiting Cleveland for the first time, I would take them to Playhouse Square, Ohio City, Public Square, Edgewater Park, and Cleveland Public Library
What advice would you give to someone considering applying for the Cleveland Foundation Summer Internship program?
For anyone interested in applying for the Cleveland Foundation Summer Internship program, I’d say… do it! It is such a fulfilling experience. Do your research on the host sites and make sure you pick one that is a fit for you! If I hadn’t been placed with Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center and East End Neighborhood House, my experience would’ve been a lot different. Ask questions and take advantage of all of the opportunities that this program offers you!