Summer 2022 Recap — The Friends of Governors Island Ambassador Interns
Aug 25, 2022 1:07 pm
NYC’s adolescent and youth population has had to endure so many challenges over the past two years; spending a great amount of time indoors and trying to adjust to the ever-changing (and increasingly common) hybrid models of school, work, and recreational programs. Because of this, The Friends of Governors Island partnered again with Futures and Options to provide a hands-on, experiential, and primarily outdoor internship that provides interns with valuable work and life experiences that they can carry with them through their professional and educational pursuits. This summer, the Friends welcomed a team of eight high school-aged interns that served as Island Ambassadors, offering their skillsets to improve the Visitor Services operations.
Futures and Options is a nonprofit organization that partners with New York’s business community to provide career and internship opportunities for underserved youth. With their extensive career readiness programs, the interns that come from Futures and Options come equipped with training and education, providing Governors Island with a valuable and diverse workforce. Interns have reapplied to come work on Governors Island for multiple summers in a row, as our Island Ambassador Internship is very well-liked and sought after amongst our cohorts each year.
The FGI Island Ambassador Internship is a holistic summer program that emphasizes growth in public outreach, community building, and ecological exploration and preservation. Throughout the five weeks, interns relate to the thriving Island community of artists, farmers, environmentalists, historians, (and more!) to explore their career interests and deepen their communication skills.
As a team, the interns serve as the core Visitor Service cohort on weekends, interfacing with the public regularly while running our Welcome Center shops. On weekdays, they support the Island’s many corporate events and preservation efforts, from the historical buildings to plant life, and get to know the diverse organizations that call Governors Island home. Additionally, the interns had the opportunity to staff some of the Island’s unique art installations, such as the May Room, and were encouraged to foster relationships with the other organizations in residence on the island, such as Beam Center, the West Harlem Art Fund, and Billion Oyster Project.
Each year, The Friends of Governors Island provides new opportunities for these young professionals. In addition to meeting a weekly requirement of in-the-field visitor service experience, the interns attended a career development workshop focusing on resume building, interview skills, and financial literacy hosted by the Friends of Governors Island staff, along with off-Island networking events.
Over the course of the summer, the 2022 interns provided nearly 1,000 hours of direct service and helped thousands of visitors. While gaining professional work and service experience is paramount for our interns, building meaningful connections with individuals on the Island and in the city they call home is also important to them as they gain confidence socially after enduring such isolating times.
Stay tuned for information on Fall internship opportunities!