My name is Danny Carrillo, presently living in Ontario, Canada. I am in the process of completing my Honours Specialization degree in Kinesiology and Sports Management at the University of Western Ontario.
I first got involved with Outreach360 through an extracurricular program at my university called Impact Experience. I chose to go on a service trip to the Dominican Republic because of the resonance the organization’s values and beliefs had for me. Being a first-generation Latin American immigrant myself, it meant a lot to me to be able to be a part of a program such as this one.
When my trip to the Dominican Republic came to an end, I knew I wanted to come back as an intern the following summer. However, due to the unexpected pandemic, the opportunity came much sooner than anticipated. What inspired me to become involved with Outreach360’s Remote Internship Program was the lasting impact the community had on me due to their kind-hearted nature. The students' attitude towards learning is another reason I did not hesitate to become part of the Remote Internship Program. Seeing the students' faces light up when they answered a question correctly was one of the most rewarding aspects of my first experience in the Dominican Republic.
The impact Outreach360 volunteers can have on the students' education virtually is limitless. Apart from potential technical difficulties, the only other obstacle to how someone teaches their lessons is their creativity! I also believe that the largest impact an Outreach360 volunteer can have on the students' education virtually is teaching them to be confident in their understanding of different concepts. Acknowledging the students' understanding of the lessons is vital for them to develop their proficiency in another language.
During my time as a Remote Intern, I gained so much respect and appreciation for the students and their desire to learn. Due to the nature of being a post-secondary student, I am very much familiar with the demands school has on individuals. However, I could not help but be in awe of the eagerness the students demonstrated for every lesson. It reminded me of the importance of taking everything step-by-step and enjoying the present moment.
Besides teaching, Outreach360 offers its interns the opportunity to be students themselves through the Leadership and Social Change program, Spanish classes, teacher training, and cultural excursions! For me, these aspects of the internship added to the well-rounded nature of the experience. They allowed me to learn new aspects of Dominican culture, different teaching techniques (to be effective second language instructors), and about concepts that are relevant to today’s society. The aspect that had the most impact on me was the Leadership and Social Change program because it was a program that forced me to think and reflect upon how I interact with my immediate environment.
Outreach360 has so much to offer their interns and I am so grateful for the opportunities that have arisen as a result of being involved with this organization! It is safe to say that I will be back again for a third time once this pandemic is over!
Something I would say to someone who is considering a remote internship with Outreach360 is to jump right into it! The first step to realizing one’s own potential is being willing to try something new. You never know, it might make you realize your future career or help you discover a newfound passion. There is nothing to lose and intentional action has an impact on the students as well as on the individual participating in the internship.
For more information on Outreach360's virtual internships, please visit www.outreach360.org/virtualimpact.