During a regular summer, it is challenging for students to identify meaningful summer employment that provides access to empowering opportunities whilst simultaneously being an intellectual challenge. This problem has been magnified by the global pandemic that sent panicked university students home in a frenzy, quite literally, fearing for their lives.
My name is Emily Hardy and I am a second-year student at Georgetown University studying International Politics with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. Originally from Vancouver, I have always regarded Minerva as a force for positive change.
With this in mind, I applied to intern at Minerva in the Pre-COVID era. As everything started to change, I watched as my peers lost internships left, right, and centre.
Fortunately for me, Minerva practices what they preach.
Minerva is dedicated to advancing women’s leadership. A big part of supporting women in their careers is adaptability and mentorship. The Minerva identified ways that I could help them remotely, and foster my own growth in a professional environment. Although I’ve been employed before, there was something different about my time at Minerva. The level of responsibility I was given and the mutual respect I received, made me feel like Minerva has been my first “real job.”
Even though I have never met, in person, the five incredible women currently on the Minerva team, I still feel like they are all invested in my growth and available to support me.
I’ve learned how to adapt to a digital work environment, write compelling pieces with a business tone, and ask others for help when needed, all the while having access to powerful, yet approachable mentors.
Minerva stands out as an incredible organization because of their tangible investment in youth. Whether it’s through Learning to Lead™ programming or hiring students through Canada Summer Jobs, Minerva is always willing to take a chance on young Canadians.
But above all else, Minerva has reminded me to seek out meaningful work. No matter the profession I pursue, I’ve learned that lifelong fulfillment requires a job that positively impacts my community. All of my experiences have one thing in common: cultivating the next generation of women to take on the world.
Ultimately, Minerva’s adaptability during COVID-19 proves that the organization can take any challenge in its stride. Their flexibility with programming and enthusiastic inclusion of a digital summer student (me) strengthens their legacy and commitment to tangible mentorship. At the end of the day, Minerva truly does practice what they preach: changing the face of leadership, one woman at a time.