Work-Based Learning (AccessComputing News Feb 2009)

Kayla Brown, AccessComputing Staff
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Kayla Brown

I am a student at Bellevue Community College. I have found work-based learning opportunities through academic programs, internships, and community service. Starting in 2005 as a DO-IT Scholar, I learned the fundamentals of a successful educational career. I participated in a series of Summer Study workshops aimed at college and career preparation and independence.

With placement assistance from DO-IT staff, I worked as an intern at the Kindering Center, a non-profit organization that assists infants with developmental disabilities and their families. At the center, I learned about budgeting, finance, and non-profit management by procuring and managing donations for their annual auction gala. I learned firsthand how to plan a large-scale event and about the challenges of securing funding to sustain a non-profit organization.

In 2008, I graduated from City Year, an AmeriCorps organization that provides young adults with full-time community service and leadership experience. I completed more than 1,700 hours of community service working with suspended middle school students in the Highline School District, and I learned what it takes to be both a leader and a team member. For my year of service, I was awarded a $4,725 scholarship toward my associate degree. After I graduate, I hope to transfer to the UW and major in psychology.

In 2007, I travelled to New Orleans where I volunteered for Habitat for Humanity's hurricane Katrina effort. I was the first person in a wheelchair to work on a house in my assigned neighborhood.

I am currently building my computer skills through an AccessComputing internship. So far, I have learned to streamline captions for the DO-IT online video database and create accessible PDFs using InDesign.

My work-based learning experiences have been fun and have helped me build an impressive resume and gain confidence!