Bersabe Tilahun | CIIP 2023 Blog Portfolio

Week 1

Since orientation had come to an end, I couldn’t wait to have connected with my partners. Having this be my first 9-5, it was exciting to see what ideas and methods I could come up with to better engage with our organization’s audiences through media. So throughout this week, I had composed social media posts, accumulated templates and adjusted to the environment. With our annual street fair coming up, I had continued reposting and reminding our followers about the event. By having there be much preparation needed to be put into this, I had felt supported by my supervisors and peers.
I had also gotten a chance to see the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum for the first time with the help of Dr. Joanne Martin’s tour guide. Having met her, I had an enjoyable interaction together and got the chance to ask questions about her organization, as well as sharing how I can better contribute to it. While working away in the office and museum, I also received the opportunity to meet other colleagues and interns from different programs who will cater to the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum. Whilst getting to know them on the tour, I had sought out all the impactful information about Black history. From Ancient Africa, to present day events, everything presented within the museum was shocking. Despite knowing a few historical events and significant figures, it was different throughout the lens of Dr. Martin’s. She and her husband ensured to continue sharing the rich history that continues to be erased—and I definitely got a feel for it.
So, with this new lifestyle that I am now accustomed to, I hope to see my progression grow within Dr. Martin’s showcased work. It was an enlightening experience to be a part of and now continue to promote to people in Baltimore! It’s a place that’s truly slept on.

Week 2

In preparation for The National Great Blacks in Wax’s collaborated Street Fair, I had spent this week virtually planning out the event. In hopes to have a great event, I had ensured to capture memories through pictures and videos with equipment from the DMC. I was practicing my camera skills throughout the days, with the help of some friends, and can’t wait to see how the end results look for our fair.

Additionally, I got the chance to meet with my other partners of WombWorks Production and get an idea for our YouthWorks Summer Program. As I’ve had a bit of experience in Hopkins Dunbar Baldwin Hughes Theatre Company, I look forward to working with the team and our attendees with the types of productions we’ll compose in the next month! Meeting with one of the founders, Mama Rashida Forman-Bey, was remarkable. She is a breath of fresh-air, and is encouraging to the contribution of her organization. With that, it moves me to merge my interest in Public Health and the Arts into one.

Despite being fully online this week, I had fun meeting new faces and continuing to have created new ideas for both organizations. Being at home allowed me to find some structure and set discipline with myself to complete tasks in a timely manner. In a way though, it was liberating to have been in this position and also have been able to meet certain goals I set for myself for the week. At the end of it all, it was nice to have been given the chance to see how these two partners of mine will connect throughout this internship—as it’s been something of mine to have wanted to explore. For it being the second week, this adjustment has been comforting as I go into it each day.

Week 3

As the progression of my partnership continues, I have been introduced to more and more incredible people. Especially within WombWork Productions, the team that consists of my site supervisor, Doralee Calderon-Fakunle, one of the co-founders, Mama Rashida, and their intern Molly, has been amazing. By seeing their work and how they continue to carry the importance that flows amongst their organization, it gives me a great feel for the new family I have been included into. In comparison to my work with The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum, I have learned so many different applications from WombWorks that will allow me to carry them over to the museum’s external communications. As I’ll be consuming different roles within social media in next year, using Insight Analytics will be critical to see how our audience(s) react to certain posts and how we can further interact with them.
So in the past couple of days, I have been finding budget-friendly analytics for all our accounts—such as Facebook Suites, that connect both our Facebook and Instagram accounts. Additionally, I have been scheduling out posts for the coming weeks, like the Fourth of July and the importance of highlighting African American slaves during that point in history. It was a relief to know that I’d be able to make content like this to continue being transparent about the history that we don’t really shed light about and be able to educate people on these matters.
Furthermore, we had to reschedule our Street Fair to July 15th, so it’s given us more time to find other vendors and small businesses we can uplift. It’s been fun being in the background of an important event like this, and seeing all the work that it takes to put into it all. I hope to have a great turn out and can’t wait to see how it all goes. Despite the challenges that have occurred along the way, it’s been an exciting journey throughout these past 3 weeks!

Week 4

As we’ve reached our halfway mark in our internship programs, I feel like I have done a lot of reflecting—specifically with my established goals, certain accomplishments, and improvements I want to implement. With there being personal matters of mine that I had to take care of at home, while also keeping my partners in the loop, getting to conquer all my goals hasn’t been the easiest. However, I deeply appreciate all the never-ending support that comes from my colleagues with what’s going on. It’s been uplifting during times in which I can’t contribute much. Like for our Street Fair—I will not be able to attend despite all the work we put into it throughout this past month of advertising and composing ideas of what to do during the event. Again, for the beginning of our YouthWorks Program that starts in early July, I haven’t gotten the chance to meet our group of kids and other staff that we’ll be working with.
But, in the coming weeks, after redirecting my approach, I feel confident to make the most out of the rest of my time together with WombWork Productions and The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum. As these events are to kick off our summer programs and to exhibit what’s to come within our organizations, a new goal of mine is to establish ideas that can carry out into the Fall—when these current programs have finished. By doing so, I hope to be able to bring the same turn-outs that we have, if not more with the type of engagement we hold in our community. For my other goals, I think a good way to stay on track with them is to continue reflecting and seeing how I can combine similar goals together and go over it with my supervisors. With their help, I believe that I can accomplish a lot and continue to make an augmented impact within the organizations!