Making excuses isn’t really my bag but I would like to make it known the reason my first blog post is rolling in a comfortable three weeks into my internship is not completely my fault. Immediately upon arrival in Dehradun, India at our homestay for Ankuri, many staples of life in Ann Arbor were thrown out with the bathwater. For one, the wifi where we are living works about as well as the wifi on the Diag. At some moments, you’re catching the perfect wave while surfing the web but in the next, you’re drowning in an ocean of failed connections. Despite this setback, especially for a media internship that relies heavily on technology, the jobs I have been working on have been incredible and are tailored to my strengths while also allowing me to dabble in realms of media I have less experience in.
As a belated introduction, Ankuri is an NGO that works in Dehradun and surrounding rural areas to help make women economically self-sufficient through programs like the Knitting Center and the farms at Rikholi. Although I am a media intern, I have been able to participate in the Education Intern program and teach English to a class of 9th and 10th graders at the local Inter-College which has been an incredible experience overall. Seeing students have fun with English through Mad-Libs activities I write and having them show me paintings and sketches they’ve been working on at school brings me insurmountable joy.
As for the work I have been doing, I have been able to write a ton and as someone who plans on going into journalism and playwriting, both careers are reflected in my duties. For one, I write first-person narrative pieces for press releases to encourage investors to contribute to Ankuri and help our programs operate as well as attract future interns to the position. These articles also require photos, which I also have a lot of experience in. However, I am learning a lot about video through the filming of a longer documentary about Ankuri with the other media intern Sean. Watching Sean film and discussing shot composition with him has been such rewarding video experience and I can comfortably say I can work my way around video as well as photography at this moment. However, the project I am most excited about is I am working on a play for the local elementary school children about the dangers of eating junk foods instead of traditional (and healthier) Indian cuisine for lunch and the impact this has on their personal health and the environment. I’m still in the drafting phase but it is a very difficult and fun project to wrap myself in.
That’s all for now! Attached are some pictures from my experiences at our homestay, playing soccer with some kids in the village, and the farms at Rikholi. I’ll be back soon once wifi is strong again. It comes in waves.