The links between Albion College, the City of Albion and the surrounding community provide incredible opportunities for students to learn at the same time they are giving back to the community. Albion has become a laboratory for small town revitalization. There is no place in America better suited to provide hands- on learning about issues that matter to every small town in our country!
It is a tribute to the scholarship that has continued here at Albion College for 180 years that a group of alumni who graduated more than a half century ago still care so much about those who have come after them. The Class of 1960 continues to demonstrate the value of our Albion network to our current students. This endowment will ensure that students interested in working in Albion will have that opportunity for years to come.
Albion Reinvestment Corporation
"How do we get more students downtown?" That was the main question that Shreeya Aryal, '20, tried to answer with her internship. She researched the flow of students in downtown Albion, spending significant time in numerous businesses. Shreeya also spoke with campus leaders on how bridge the communication gap with downtown Albion and developed an Ambassadors program that uses enthusiastic students to encourage their peers to shop downtown. Finally, she organized a group of volunteers to decorate vacant storefront windows for the holidays.
Working with the Albion Reinvest Corporation showed Shreeya how to assist economic development of a small town. Says Shreeya, "I have a better understanding of downtown revitalization, something I want to continue working on in the future."
Albion District Library
A budding activist, Jasmine Maddox, '20, spent the fall working in the archives of the Albion District Library. Her specific task was to organize and catalog their collection of urban renewal documents from the 1960's. Jasmine shifted through hundreds of documents, met with individuals who remember what happened, and made the collection more accessible for the public and future researchers. She will continue her work in the spring and interview individuals directly affected by urban renewal in Albion.
Jasmine thoroughly enjoyed her experience and has relished in making a positive impact on the Albion community just as the community has on her: "when I read personal testimonies about how urban renewal impacted Albion, I recognized my privilege and it has me eager to tell the stories of others."
With an individually designed major revolving around how technology can help a community, Alexandria Adle, '20, spent the 2019 spring and summer as a marketing intern for the Bohm Theatre. She managed social media accounts and created graphics for the nonprofit theater that not only helped raise awareness for different events, but shared the history of the Bohm as well. A talented photographer, Alexandria also took photos during special events and launched a photo contest.
Alexandria will continue working for the Bohm Theater as an employee. Her internship has better prepared her for a career of service, stating: "My experiences with learning how to market and expand the Bohm's presence online and offline have helped me acquire valuable skills that will be critical in later life ventures."
Summit Pointe Housing
Hannah Reamer, '20, spent the spring semester combating homelessness in Calhoun County with the housing department of Summit Pointe, a nonprofit provider of mental health care and social services. Along with creating newsletters, fact sheets, and a Facebook page for the Homeless Coalition of Calhoun County, Hannah assisted with intake meetings for families seeking housing. She also helped with an annual count of homeless individuals, distributing resources and aided people in completing their paperwork for assistance.
This internship opened Hannah's eyes to what public service really means: "Now, I see public service as something greater than cleaning up trash or working on a park for the community. It's about coming together, it's about achieving goals, it's about the common good, and it's about doing it all out of the kindness of your heart."
Albion District Library
A public library is more than "a quiet place where the books live;" it is an important community resource. Bekah Jevfert, '19, was exposed to a wide range of library services while working for the Albion District Library. As an intern, Bekah catalogued city directories and newspapers that dated back to the late 1800's, helped with collection management, designed and curated different display cases, assisted with special events, and drafted correspondence for the GED program.
Not only did Bekah learn about a powerful asset in the community, but she explored a possible career path as well, stating: "my internship for Ford at the Albion District Library was as enjoyable as it was educational; it helped advance my analytical, organizational, creative, and developmental skills through a multitude of activities and projects and enlightened me on the possibilities of a career within library science."
Greater Albion Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau
Brandon Veihl, '19, has been a part of the Albion business community while studying at Albion College. Whether it was delivering pizzas for Hungry Howies or assisting guests at the Courtyard by Marriott, Brandon knows what it takes to operate a business in this city. That is why he took an opportunity to work for an organization that supports Albion businesses. As an intern for the Greater Albion Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau, Brandon helped redesign the chamber website, putting more of a spotlight on chamber members. He also managed the chamber's social media accounts and summarized various community meetings for chamber members.
Brandon is considering law school and a career in city management. He hopes to focus on making communities more sustainable. His internship was extremely valuable to Brandon: "The chamber gave me an opportunity to not only expand my professional experience, but also, by working with businesses in a small community, gave me a chance to reflect on what my personal career goals are."
City of Albion
Starting as a volunteer her freshman year, Isabel Allaway, '20, has worked in the Albion City Manager's office since the spring of 2017. In addition to being a welcoming presence to citizens visiting city hall, she assisted with a number of projects from editing the city's comprehensive plan to writing grants on behalf of the Calhoun County Public Transit Taskforce to overseeing the installation of bike racks across the city. Isabel also led the creation of a resident and tourist guide for the city, a project that she will bring to a close as an intern with the Greater Albion Chamber of Commerce in the fall.
After graduation, Isabel plans on attending law school to become a civil rights attorney, but wants to continue to work with municipalities. She believes her internship, with support of the ACIE, has prepared her for her future career: "Regardless of the specific path I choose, my time as an intern for the city has given me experience and understanding that will benefit me in all fields pertaining to public policy or service."
Albion Economic Development Corporation
Beau Brockett, '19, the Managing Editor of the Albion Pleiad, put his writing skills to work as a Marketing and Public Relations Intern for the Albion Economic Development Corporation during the spring 2018 semester. Working for former ACIE recipient Danielle Nelson, '17, Beau was tasked with a number of projects. The first half of his internship was spent creating the AEDC's first-ever annual report. Once that project was completed, Beau generated a website and marketing plan for a local nonprofit, wrote press releases, and crafted a one-page document that highlights recent investments in the city.
Beau went from interacting with the "movers and shakers" of the Albion community to feeling like he was one. He appreciated his time with the AEDC and felt like he was part of something bigger, saying "I was able to take on so many projects and see how impactful my work was for both staff and for community; I would never be able to do that at a larger organization."