Jessica Baskerville joined BRHP as a communications and special projects intern for the summer. In this Q&A, Jessica shares why she joined our team, what she’s been working on, and what she’ll take away from her time with us.
Can you share a little bit about yourself and why you chose the Baltimore Regional Housing Partnership for your internship?
I’m a rising senior at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. I’ve spent the past three years studying journalism, communications and criminal justice while interning for different organizations in the DMV. Through living in D.C. and watching the COVID-19 pandemic impact every aspect of life as we know it, I learned a lot about how housing stability is linked to public health, racial disparities, economic disparities, and educational stabilities. During this time, I found this BRHP internship on Handshake. I really wanted to get involved in more advocacy and issue-focused work, and the mission and work of BRHP called out to me.
What have you been working on during your internship?
Every month, I drafted content for the social media calendar for Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. I created graphics and posts to educate our families about the children tax credit, BRHP’s office reopening, adult education opportunities, and financial literacy. For some of our virtual events, I worked on the outreach and created scripts and presentations. For our Back to School Supply Drive, I worked with Senior Communications Manager Tiffani Long to create a timeline, reach out to libraries and community centers, coordinate with our families and pack the school supply bundles to help our families prepare for the school year. I also wrote a blog about how our property partners can promote housing stability by helping their tenants find rental assistance.
How do you think you’ve helped our team with its mission?
Through the instability of the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve been able to help BRHP’s mission by communicating concise and consistent information. By showcasing our resources, writing scripts for videos and presentations to inform our families and property partners and providing solutions, I’ve been able to provide information during a particularly chaotic time.
Did anything surprise you about working at BRHP?
I was surprised with just how many bases BRHP covers in their work. Not only does BRHP help families with housing vouchers find housing, but they also counsel them before, during, and after they move-in. They also focus on their property partners by making sure they maintain professional relationships with their tenants and have the resources to provide stable and safe housing for their families. They do this by hosting monthly property partner power hours on frequently asked questions, along with sending bi-monthly resource newsletters. It’s amazing to know that they’re able to provide relief in more ways than one.
What have you learned during this internship that you can apply in the future?
The best part about working at BRHP is that you get to see the direct impact of your work on the families in our program. With that mind, all skills are valued at places like BRHP, from counseling, to technology, to customer service; nonprofits are made up of so many amazing people with different backgrounds that are all working toward a common goal. I learned from my time at BRHP just how much I value making an impact through communications and outreach. After my time at BRHP, I’ll continue to advocate for increased access to stable housing. I’ll also definitely look at positions at nonprofit organizations after graduating from college.
BRHP is always seeking student interns. If you are interested in furthering our mission and being considered for a paid or school credit internship, please send your resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org.