When Penn State Brandywine senior Tom O’Donnell began his internship at Tyler Arboretum this fall, he had no idea his title of “Special Events/Communications Intern” would translate to him being “the everything guy.” I sat down and chatted with Tom after Pumpkin Days to hear more about what he’s been up to and how his internship has been progressing.
Tom immediately said to me that he is having a very well-rounded internship. He gets to work on something different every day, and he thoroughly enjoys working with different people. As a senior Communications major, Tom is especially pleased that what he has been learning in class is being directly applied during his internship. He shared an example of learning about newsletter writing in one of his courses – and now, he has contributed to Tyler Topics! (he has also learned that the phrase “you are always going to be edited” rings true…)
This is Tom’s first internship, and he had no idea what to expect when he started. He didn’t know that he would be able to assist with event planning, writing press releases, checking membership lists and names…. the list goes on! Tom strongly encourages all students to consider an internship at Tyler. Although Tyler internships are not paid, Tom shared that, “you get your money’s worth.” Recently, Tom attended a career fair on campus, and one of the employers he spoke with directly pointed out his Tyler internship listed on his resume and told him that an internship at a non-profit looks really good.
In addition to the work experience, Tom said that the Tyler staff are, “really, really nice and fun to talk to.” He said the part of his internship he will miss the most is the people, but he has a strong interest in volunteering for Tyler in the future. Tom shared with me that there’s much more work going into [running] a non-profit than what he feels people realize. Certainly, Tom, Tyler will continue to benefit and grow from your passion and talents you’ll share with the organization in the future!