About My Swim Beach Internship
By Logan D.
Today I began my internship at Clark County Public Health as a Swim Beach Intern. I will primarily sample the lakes in the region for fecal coliforms and cyanobacteria in order to ensure that the recreational swim beaches are safe for swimmers. I will also create a waterborne illness toolkit that will be used in emergencies as a how-to guide when events that pose a risk to public health occur. Upon entering the office this morning, I was surprised to see so few people working at their desks. After meeting with my supervisor, I learned that majority of the work done at CCPH requires a field aspect and that most employees were out sampling, performing inspections, or giving consultations. I really liked the idea of working part-time in an office and part-time outdoors.
I worked with one coworker to train in Swim Beach Monitoring. I initially met her last year as an intern and was happy to work with a familiar face on my first day. She was very knowledgeable about water testing and I was thrilled to learn that she had been a swim beach intern and was eventually hired into a full-time and paid position not long after her internship. As we talked, I learned that a lot of people who worked at CCPH had been a swim beach intern at some point in their professional career and that there were many chances to be hired once the internship was complete. It is very reassuring to know that this internship not only provides valuable information, but also potentially leads to jobs directly at the county level.
The prospect of having a summer outdoors was one of the major factors that contributed to my interest in this position and is also the part I am the most excited for! In my childhood, I frequently went to the lakes with my family to enjoy the recreational swim beaches. I am glad that I can continue this tradition for all members within the community by ensuring that these lakes are a safe place for families to visit. However, I am a little concerned with the creation of the waterborne illness tool kit due to my fears that it will not be helpful in the case of emergency. I plan on remedying this fear by making connections with the rest of the water recreation team in order to interview them about their wants and needs for this toolkit.
My first impression as the swim beach intern has given me high hopes for a great summer that involves relevant work to uphold community standards of public health.