In Boulder you can be classified as either one of two things: a student, or not a student. Not students are usually characterized by being tiny cute people with chubby cheeks or grown-up and married. Students will most likely be spotted donning a face that says “economy-eshnonomy...I’ll still find a job” and searching for cheap beer. Well Downtowners, I happen to be one such CU student. And when a student such as me finds themselves all worked up about facing graduation in the upcoming year, there is only one thing for us to do: Get an internship! An unpaid internship! A resume one-liner that says “Hey! Look at me! I’ve had real world experience (sort of)!” And through the magic that is Craigslist, I ended up at Downtown Boulder.
The school year is about to begin yet again (as you may have noticed the increase of traffic, the long lines at Target, and the occasional awkward parent-child duo strolling downtown) which means I will be far too busy reading (or renting the movie), writing (an hour before it’s due) and attending class (maybe) to continue this internship. That’s right folks, your favorite blogger/phone answerer is fleeing the nest onto bigger and better things. As this is my last blog for Downtown Boulder, I’d like to share with you all the valuable lessons I’ve learned.
1. People do actually still use fax machines.
Who knew? Of course, our machine really loved getting paper jams all the time and making loud noises for no apparent reason…but only when I was using it of course. I think it only took me about five or so tries to get it right.
2. Change is good…sometimes.
The first month of my internship was spent working on website system A. The rest were spent working with website system B, which, as it turned out, was quite a bit more difficult than system A so we decided that we would switch back a few weeks after I leave. So a sizable chunk of my time was spent getting to know, updating, and perfecting something this office will never use again.
3. Don’t let your boss leave you for a month for something silly like a wedding – something bad and scary will happen
Did I mention that while this little transition from website system A to B took place my boss was miraculously on the other side of the planet? And just when things start smoothing out, when I start feeling like I have a job and not an internship, he comes back and I get to change the tape dispenser.
4. Bagged lunches are for toddlers
But being 21 in an office means I basically am a toddler, so I guess it’s okay. PB&J for life!
5. NEVER press the “delete all” button.
Seriously. Not for any reason. Do not click it. This was a lesson I learned just last week, after months of the red-haired ball of sarcasm that is my boss telling me I needed to make an “intern mistake” to spice things up. The whole office happens to be chatting by my desk while I’m happily working away on a mundane task like any young person just entering the workforce will, and oops! There goes my office cred. You may recall our calendar being oddly blank and event-less for an entire weekend? You’re welcome.
Before my days of trying to be a real, functional person, I pretty much thought Boulder was about a 10 block radius consisting of campus and The Hill. Now, not only am I a walking Rolodex for Downtown Boulder, but I know that it can be quite easy to be a functional person, all you need is good music to keep you motivated, to-do lists to keep you working, and swag to keep you happy.
And expert skills with a fax machine.
- Claire Little