As a senior at the University of Minnesota, the coursework for the Scientific and Technical Communication major had confirmed to me that I was pursuing the right degree; my passion is writing and communicating factual information for a variety of audiences. However, I felt that I needed to acquire an engaging and rewarding internship position in order to utilize the skills I had learned and prepare myself for a career after graduation.
On a Sunday afternoon in November, I decided to take a break from a weekend full of homework and socialize with someone other than my cat, so I walked to a pub in my neighborhood. The place was relatively empty, but there were two men sitting near me who were holding a friendly conversation with the bartender about music and bicycling. This was my first introduction to Jon and Trevor. Jon struck up a conversation with me and welcomed me into the discussion. After talking about our mutual Eastern-Wisconsin roots, I explained that I had moved to Minneapolis to pursue a degree in Scientific and Technical Communication. Since the major is relatively small and I usually receive a confused response when I tell someone what I studied in school, I was pleasantly surprised to hear that Jon was familiar with the career I was pursuing and that Space2Burn was looking for a Technical Writer intern.
Meeting Jon and Trevor for the first time in an informal setting had shown me that they were people I could see myself working with; I could tell they were knowledgeable and passionate about their work without being uptight or unapproachable. A few emails back and forth with Jon and a week later, I visited the Space2Burn office to interview for the internship position. I was really excited to start working with the team and learn how to apply and expand my skills in a professional setting.
I quickly felt at home interning at Space2Burn. After an introduction to the ignitr application, I began to understand the impressive quality of everything Space2Burn does and sought to reflect that level of greatness in every project I worked on for the company.
I’ve completed a variety of tasks this semester, all of which provided me with worthwhile learning experiences and a feeling of inclusion in the Space2Burn team. Projects included marketing writing, quality assurance, support documentation editing and creation, website migration, and even assisting clients with ignitr support. Trevor and Jon’s work ethic and dedication to their clients constantly inspired me to work harder and uphold the Space2Burn standard of excellence. I’ve always been treated with respect as an intern and I consider Jon and Trevor to be my mentors and friends. The office’s nature is conducive to open communication, so I have never been left without support or the ability to ask questions. I believe this reflects the support available to the company’s clients; Jon and Trevor are always considering their clients’ needs and strive to convey that consideration in the work they do.
Trevor and Jon’s passion for bicycling has stimulated my interest in the pedal-driven machines throughout the semester; after seeing bicycles around the office every week and hearing numerous tales of their biking adventures, I longed to become a part of bicycle culture. At the end of my internship, Jon gifted me a bicycle to call my own. I am proud that I can now call myself a cyclist.
Besides the skills and knowledge (and bicycle) I’ve gained through this internship, one of the most valuable results of this experience has been an increase in my confidence as a technical writer and a person in general. Trevor and Jon have taught me that superb communication is one of the most useful and important skills to possess. I consider myself lucky to have had an opportunity to intern at Space2Burn and will apply what I’ve learned from my internship experience into my future professional and personal endeavors.