Carlmont students rush to get involved in Water Dog Run internship program – Scot Scoop News
With the changing leaves of autumn comes the annual Belmont Water park for dogs. While most are familiar with the community-driven race, which raises funds for schools and youth programs, many may not be aware of the involvement of some Carlmont students behind the scenes.
The Belmont Water Dog Run launched an internship program this year for students to lead the event’s marketing, web design and social media.
While the race is scheduled for October 8, the search for trainees began in February, allowing time to prepare for the event. Huan Phan, the Vice President of the Belmont Water Dog Run Board, explained why they thought of adding trainees for this event and why they decided to seek them out from the Carlmont student body.
“I had been on the board for a while. I knew we needed design and web help and that Carlmont had such a program, so I wondered if I could get some help from Carlmont,” Phan said.
According to Lindsay Roth, senior and intern at the Belmont Water Dog Run, Carlmont enables students to get involved in web development, Google ads and social media for nonprofits through its Student Business Enterprises club. She explained how her experience with the Student Business Enterprises Club helped her in the internship.
“My friend showed me an email that the Belmont Water Dog Run needed someone to do web development or social media, and we could apply as a team,” Roth said. “Before that, we did a few websites together for two different nonprofits that went pretty well, and we were already learning how to use WordPress.”
Belmont Water Dog Run trainees attend weekly Zoom meetings to discuss the progress of tasks they are working on and get new tasks to complete for the following week.
Phan designed the meetings to mimic a professional work environment, giving trainees a collaborative experience in a work environment.
It’s like we’re involved in funding some parts of our school, which is kind of crazy to think about.
“I do this because I try to give the student as professional an interaction as possible, as if they were working in a company. We have regular meetings with agendas, due dates, all that said Phan.
Although Phan and the interns worked well together, Phan noted that the success of the internship was largely the result of the work of John Rowe, Carlmont business professor and club advisor for student business ventures.
“I would be remiss if I did not mention that a very important person to do this job is Mr. John Rowe of Carlmont,” Phan said. “When I was interviewing the students, I spoke to Mr. Rowe, and he offered to participate as a mentor for the students. Mr. Rowe attended all the weekly meetings and he was wonderful, offering advice to the students and to myself when he felt it was necessary. There is a very important reason why this works.
Rowe explained his role in the Belmont Water Dog Run meetings and stressed the importance of providing this kind of support to students.
“I think it’s just a great opportunity for students to learn real-world skills, and we teach all of these wonderful skills in the classroom that they can apply in the real world,” Rowe said. “For Belmont Water Dog Run, we’re working with other students who helped code the website in WordPress, and now it’s a living site. We’re working to get a record number of participants, but we’re pretty close. Hopefully we will have a record number of participants this year due to the great work done by the students.
With the successes of this first set of interns, Phan hopes to expand the internship program with Carlmont in subsequent years.
“When I interviewed in February, I wanted juniors because I knew the race would be in October,” Phan said. “If this is successful, we will recruit another group, and we hope that the existing group of students will hand over the work to the new group. Then, year after year, we have a group of juniors who know something like this is possible.
Roth explained the benefits of being part of the program, from improving her web design skills to simply being able to support her school community in ways she didn’t know how.
“Money raised goes to local elementary schools, middle schools and Carlmont,” Roth said. “It’s like we’re involved in funding parts of our school, which is kind of crazy to think about.”