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Brooklyn Lewis, a sophomore at Pleasant Grove High School and Kenneth Woods, a junior at Laguna Creek High School were among the students who had the opportunity to participate in this year’s Summer at City Hall program hosted by EGUSD and the City of Elk Grove.  Students from six Elk Grove Unified high schools learned about occupations in various civil servant fields, job-shadowed people, and took part in a mock city council meeting that addressed specific local civil and societal issues.

Brook and Kenny interned in the District’s Communication Department and received a better understanding of what goes on behind-the-scenes. The student interns assisted in copy-editing some EGUSD news stories and spoke to Elk Grove Unified leaders, including Superintendent Chris Hoffman and Communications Director, Xanthi Pinkerton.

“One thing to bring to light was how you should aspire for  careers you have a love for. I love to write, so I might major in writing/journalism in college,” Brook said. “To work in a job you love is the best way to live your life.”

Brook’s Experience: In Her Own Words:

Summer at City Hall: It was interesting. We learned about different things, like considering all the options– pros and cons– in things like the casino that will be built off the freeway. We met many different people, from the mayor to the California senator and congressman. We talked about the things people looked for to in the typical workplace. For example, some were open to the idea of an enclosed workspace with a steady amount of noise.

You should always work your hardest, because it pays off in the end. Work like you don’t need the money. Work a job you love, not a job you feel like is  a chore to do everyday. Always respect others if you want to be respected yourself. People all have a reason to be here, you just have to find yours.

On the Pros and Cons of the Casino:

Pros: The City will profit from this even if we don’t own the land. There will be more business in the area  they are building in and that place has been fairly dry. If the resort/hotel is built, there will be new and good restaurants in the area that had been devoid of them. More jobs will be available from the casino and resort.

Cons: There will be a place for gambling addicts to get to more easily. Traffic increased and more smoking problems  could affect the air quality near the area. The city will only get so much money from it because we do not own the land, the roads will wear from the increased  traffic and robberies might increase. Other places might be but out of business from it taking everything.

Kenneth’s Experience: In His Own Words:

Participating in the Summer at City Hall Internship Program has been a great experience. During this two-week program, students hear from guest speakers like Congress Representative Dr. Ami Bera and State Assemblyman Jim Cooper. Congressman Bera and Assemblyman Cooper shared their career journeys, life experiences and  provided tips on how to best handle situations when establishing your path. During the “Summer at City Hall,” we learned how the City of Elk Grove was founded and the origin of each high school name in the Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD).

Specifically, Laguna Creek High School’s namesake is of Spanish background. When the Spanish settled in the Elk Grove area, the land was flooded. The settlers then shouted “laguna! laguna,” which means flooded in Spanish. Also, during the internship program, I had the opportunity to job shadow in the EGUSD Communications Department, where I learned about how EGUSD manages all school social media sites as well as writing District content.

I also was  able to participate in one of the District’s newest projects; I was interviewed on-camera! During the internship, we participated in a mock Elk Grove City Council Meeting to discuss current city issues. We “roleplayed” as the City Mayor, Vice Mayor, Council Members along with other aspects of a city council meeting. This year’s topic of discussion was the new Costco that the actual City Council recently approved.
Overall, this summer internship has really helped me get some good work experience and also a chance to shadow a job that I have interest in having a career in. I highly recommend signing up for this internship. It’s a great experience, you’ll get to meet other EGUSD students and also hear from some very important leaders of not only our local government, but our federal government.