Introducing the Gephardt Institute’s Summer Internship Team

In early June, the Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement welcomed six summer interns to the team. Seth Coven, Jennie Greenstein, and Jocelyn Meraz are undergraduate students; Casey Knotts is a Master’s Research Fellow; and Jacob Metz and Emma Riley are recent graduates of Washington University. This group of highly talented and civic-minded individuals increases the institute’s capacity for engagement of other students, faculty, alumni, and partners to foster a robust university-wide civic culture and impact. Over the course of the summer, they will work with professional staff to develop quality student outreach programs, research best practices, and expand the institute’s communications and marketing reach.

Seth is a rising junior studying philosophy, neuroscience, and psychology in the College of Arts & Sciences. As an incoming first year student, he participated in the Gephardt Institute’s Leadership Through Service (LTS) pre-orientation program for new students. He returned as a counselor last summer and is now serving as the 2017 LTS Coordinator. His role involves organizing LTS logistics for over 100 student participants and staff, including numerous service projects, guest speakers, St. Louis excursions, and counselor trainings. Outside of work, he is excited to take advantage of free summer events in St. Louis, including Shakespeare in the Park and Jazz Crawls Downtown.

Jennie is a rising junior majoring in educational studies and psychology in the College of Arts & Sciences. She is coordinating the 2017 Meet St. Louis program for first year students. Meet St. Louis offers excursion experiences for students, which are customized around specific neighborhoods, issues, and communities in the region. Participants get to know the St. Louis community and interact with like-minded peers and campus and community partners. This year’s program takes place September 2. Between now and then, Jennie will be working with trip leaders to develop plans for each excursion. She will handle all event marketing, logistics, and assure that all participants experience a reflective discussion to integrate their learning. Jennie is looking forward to taking advantage of free area activities, such as live music at the Botanical Gardens and Shakespeare in the Park.

Jocelyn is a rising senior studying global health and environment in the College of Arts & Sciences and healthcare management in the Olin Business School. As the Special Projects Coordinator, she is supporting the planning and implementation of a range of summer projects that strengthen the organizational systems, administration, and communication of the Gephardt Institute. She also supports the Civic Engagement Fund, a program that provides grants up to $5,000 for civic and community engagement initiatives. Jocelyn is planning for 2017-2018 grant cycles, creating a more consistent application platform between the different grants, and working on the marketing plan for the fall semester. This summer, she is looking forward to seeing The Little Mermaid at the Muny, going to a baseball game, and exploring Forest Park.

Casey is a graduate student in social work and public health at the Brown School of Social Work. As a Master’s Research Fellow, she is continuing her spring semester work to build and implement evaluation tools for this summer’s Goldman Fellows program. She is also providing visioning and best practice support to staff as they make decisions for the second year of the Communities of Practice student leadership program. She will be attending as many Muny shows as possible and exploring new neighborhoods this summer.

Jacob (’17) received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Arts & Sciences, with majors in political science and American culture studies. He is working with Gephardt Institute staff to research best practices in Community-Engaged Teaching. In July, he will join the Gephardt Institute’s St. Louis Urban Fellows Program. He will work full-time in St. Louis City Hall for ten months, with a focus on initiatives that advance city and regional priorities. In his free time, he looks forward to learning more about different neighborhoods in St. Louis and their unique histories, as well as taking walks through Forest Park.

Emma (’17) graduated from the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in communication design and a second major in American culture studies. She serves as the institute’s design lead and is collaborating with diverse stakeholders to define our unique brand voice and positioning platform, and develop an integrated visual identity system. She will produce brand guidelines and master brand materials that are accessible to all staff. Emma is a St. Louis native and is excited to spend time skateboarding and slacklining in Forest Park this summer before moving to the West Coast.

In addition to their substantive responsibilities, the team will receive routine access to coaching, mentorship, training, and professional development opportunities. The Gephardt Institute professional staff is grateful for the energy, talent, and professionalism that the intern team brings each day. “We take great pride in our Gephardt Student Internship Program,” said Stephanie Kurtzman, Peter G. Sortino Director of the Gephardt Institute. “Our interns have the opportunity for hands-on learning in a professional environment that aligns with their community values, at the same time that we gain invaluable talent that helps us prepare for the academic year and advance our vision.”