Hi! My name is Emma and I’ve been an intern at the UU-UNO for almost a month. I’m a lifelong UU who attends two congregations: the Unitarian Church in Summit and the First Unitarian Society of Plainfield. Throughout high school I’ve been very involved with UU youth programming on the district level. I’m a member of the Youth Adult Committee for the Metropolitan NY District, for which I’ve served as Energy Coordinator and Outreach Coordinator. I was also worship leader for my youth group in Summit last year and co-leader of the group this year. This week I’ll be graduating high school and I plan on attending Stanford University in the fall.
Intern life is good here at the office. I do a lot of intern-at-an-office type things like printing, writing names on envelopes, and folding brochures. But there are also a lot of other neat opportunities here that couldn’t be found anywhere else!
Since there are only three staff members at the UU-UNO, interns really get to participate in the work we do here. I worked on making the UN Sunday resource packet for this year and edited many of our flyers. I sorted through our database to help determine which congregations were Blue Ribbon Congregations and wrote a blog about stopping violence against women. Many interns get involved with specific programs such as Every Child is Our Child, Climate Change, or LGBT Rights.
Still, the coolest part about working here is that you get a UN pass, which allows you to attend a variety of meetings at the United Nations. The UU-UNO has both Department of Public Information (DPI) and Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) non-governmental (NGO) status, meaning that we can go to meetings under either of these groups. So far I’ve attended meetings about ending child labor, the International Court of Justice, HIV/AIDS, and disarmament. The office work here isn’t too demanding so interns are allowed to go to whichever meetings we’d like, provided that they have something to do with the UU-UNO’s interests.
Some of the meetings are better than others, but regardless of how interesting the subject of the meeting itself is, it’s always interesting to be at a meeting at the UN. The speakers all come from different cultural backgrounds and bring many different viewpoints.
Overall, interning here has been a great experience. And if you’re really lucky like I was, you might even see the Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki Moon, along your adventures.
By Emma Budiansky, UU-UNO Intern