The interns convened with League leaders on Saturday, April 4 virtually via Google Meet. Attending the training were Nonprofit Administrative Intern Cynthia Deng, Action Intern Kai Kai Spencer, Communications Intern Laszlo Zim, Communications Director Linda Carothers, and Directors Kandea Mosley and Adena Ishii.
The meeting kicked off with attendees sharing general updates, including how they were faring and what they had worked on with the League since the previous meeting in February.
Despite being hampered by colds multiple times in the past few months, Nonprofit Administrative Intern Cynthia was able to continue reporting on the happenings of the City of Albany by attending city hall meetings and composing articles for the League website. Intern Cynthia and Director Kandea Mosley are also in the last stages of reorganizing the League’s shared Google Drive and will present the revamped file management system to board members.
Action Intern Kai Kai Spencer followed the housing crisis closely, attending meetings on the Measures O and P commissions and open house meetings for People’s Park.
“Attending the open house meetings for the People’s Park development has been an interesting experience,” Intern Kai Kai noted, explaining “There was everyone you can imagine in the room. There were people against it and there were people for it… all of these people who care about the development.”
Next, as a team building activity, the attendees reflected on their experiences during the shelter-at-home order, sharing what they’ve learned from the experience and any tips they had for the others on staying productive and sharp. Communications Director Linda and Intern Cynthia seemed to be handling it well, with Intern Cynthia explaining that she is an “indoor person” and Director Linda adding that she was “naturally adapted to sheltering in place.” Meanwhile, Director Adena provided the perspective of an extrovert.
“One of the things I’ve learned about myself is even though I’m an extrovert, I don’t necessarily have to be with people all the time,” Director Adena said. “I definitely think it’s made me slow down a lot and I think that’s super valuable for me.”
“I’ve been aware of problem solving in new ways… creatively coming up with solutions… simplifying things even more so… and trying to coordinate more efficiently,” Director Kandea observed about her behavior during the pandemic.
She recommended “striking some kind of balance between being aware of the news, watching the news, and unplugging from the news,” mentioning that doing so has been quite “critical for [her] in terms of health.”
Laszlo initiated an icebreaker in which interns and League leaders kept the mood light by sharing the song they thought would be played on repeat in hell. Director Kandea picked “We Are the Champions,” a song she said she’d been hearing too frequently recently; Intern Kai Kai choosing “Cotton Eye Joe,” making Communications Intern Laszlo shudder as well; Director Linda picking “The Periodic Table Song,” which was “cute the first time” until she heard it “repeating forever;” and Director Adena choosing a song from her elementary school PE class, evidently a terrifying memory.
Finally, Director Adena gave the interns a glimpse of League Conventions in a presentation delineating the schedules of both State and National League Conventions. The interns learned about Director Adena’s personal efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion at the national level by presenting the topic at conventions. Director Adena also reflected on the direction of the League and her own hopes for it.
“With the increase in diversity, we will get a wider variety of topics coming in,” Director Adena predicted, adding that “there are some bread and butter issues but… we always have to be vigilant. One of the biggest ways that conventions differ each year is that we address new threats to our democracy.”
Before the meeting concluded, Director Adena encouraged the interns to be proactive in seizing the opportunity to attend conventions in the future if possible, and to stay involved with the League wherever they may end up in the United States when they go off to college.
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