Sunday, August 26, 2012

Internship Highlights!

The summer intern session is winding down. With about a week left, the summer interns are getting ready to head out and continue on their way to a career working with animals. Jessica, Cassie, Cassandra, Emily, Heidi, and Johnny will all be leaving IEAS at the end of the month, and we're sorry to see them go. Their internship has been packed with resume boosting skills and new experiences that will make them even better candidates for future positions.

One of the highlights of their internship was learning to work with mortar and cement to repair and remodel pools! They took part in the reconstruction of six different pools, giving them tons of experience working with the materials used in the projects. They've even been able to see the implementation of a pump system to create a running waterfall in the pools, and they have had the opportunity to learn how the pumps run and how to fix potential problems in them.

Another exciting portion of their internship was taking part in the three classes that IEAS has for them. These classes include Laws & Regulations, Grant & Proposal Writing, and Firearms Safety Training. In the Laws & Regulations class, the interns were able to learn and discuss the varying state and federal laws regarding the owning, housing, and caring for exotic animals. They researched their own home states to find out what the regulations are where they come from. It is a great start to their complete knowledge and understanding of the field.

The Grant & Proposal Writing class taught the interns about a big part of being a non-profit organization - asking for donations. They were able to take part in helping the Sanctuary obtain donated products from companies nationwide, and they were very successful! This particular group of interns helped IEAS get donations of fire ant killer, grinding wheels, bleach sprayers, insect spray, hot wire materials, gift cards, and a hose. This is a wonderful set of goods for the Sanctuary to receive and we are grateful for both the interns' hard work AND the companies who were generous enough to donate to the Sanctuary!

The Firearms Safety Training class was a lesson in the important of gun safety and knowledge when working with potentially deadly animals. After first learning the ins and outs of the gun, the necessary safety protocols, and the proper use of them, the interns were able to practice their shot. The knowledge and practical skills they picked up in this class are necessary additions to any facility where dangerous animals are present.

The interns were also able to take part in the Sanctuary's revolutionary Emotional Enrichment Program, instituted by Animal Behaviorist Louis Dorfman. In taking part in this program, the interns were able to contribute to the emotional well-being of the animals living at IEAS. This has proven to be one of the most rewarding facets of their time at the Sanctuary for both the interns and the animals. 

We were happy to have had these eight interns here at IEAS this session. They did a great job, and we can't wait to see where they end up! Alex and Jay will be staying on in the fall for another three month session, so soon enough, we will welcome six new face to IEAS!

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