Summer intern Ryan Donahue contributed to this story.
Every summer, Melrose teenagers have the opportunity to learn job skills and earn community service hours by serving as interns in City Hall.
This summer marked the 12th year of the internship program, which started with a small group of students and has expanded to over 40 interns in recent years. Valerie O’Loughlin, a graduating senior and a former intern herself, served as this year’s intern coordinator.
During the six-week program, students worked on a variety of projects, including helping preserve historical records for the Veterans’ office, writing posts for this blog, and more mundane tasks such as filing and organizing.
Why would a teenager spend two days a week at City Hall rather than on the beach? “Being an intern is a good opportunity, and I enjoy helping other people out,” said intern Zack Shea, who wrote a profile of the Sally Frank’s Farmers’ Market and learned some interesting facts along the way—such as the fact that they have a bike repair booth there on some weeks.
“I had a great first experience with the internship and enjoyed learning more about government,” said Claire Albuja, who also wrote a number of blog posts and particularly enjoyed researching the history of City Hall at the library.
Second-year intern Faith Waaramaa spent part of her time doing filing and organizing in the Treasurer’s Department. “I enjoyed both years of my internship,” she said, “and I highly recommend it as a way of earning your community service hours.”