Over the past six months, I have been an intern with the KCA, and over that time, I have learned numerous lessons and built long-term relationships. As a student of the George Washington University – Milken School of Public Health – I have been gifted the opportunity to work with the KCA. This journey has been one of the simplest and most enjoyable experiences of my life, and I will hold the KCA in high regard moving forward.
In August of 2020, I was offered a position with the KCA as a communications intern, an opportunity to learn and grow my skills within a real-world organization. Luckily, I found an organization that gave me all the tools I needed to succeed and had a mission that aligns with my values. In the early weeks of my internship, I was given free rein to design and research a program that I hoped would help my curriculum and the KCA. This turned out to be a long-term project that has the implications of being a tool that can grow the KCA’s reach exponentially.
Specifically, I was heavily involved in the creation of the new patient advocacy letter-writing campaign. This can be found here for those interested in making their voices heard and becoming part of a wonderful community. This project could be considered the entire reason I was afforded the opportunity to work with the KCA and is a labor of love. It took months of research, outreach, and hard work to put together this program that has nowhere to go but up and can help the KCA go to new heights.
Though my time was not meant to be forever with the Kidney Cancer Association, I knew I had to leave an impact in every way that I could. This led me to multiple opportunities to spread my wings and try to succeed on my own such as writing various blogs, conducting research for real-world programs, and participating in numerous events such as IKCS or the KCA’s first Facebook live. These are all things I never thought I would ever have the chance of completing. Only having 6 months to build something can be a daunting task, though I had a wonderful supervisor who was there at every turn.
Radha Chitale has been instrumental as a tool for my growth both within and outside of the KCA and a mentor in many ways. She is the individual who brought me into the KCA and gave me the chance to build something I never before thought I could, to help people in new and exciting ways, and to be more than I thought I could ever be. Without Radha, I would not be in the place I am, speaking about all of the cool opportunities I have been given.
I am truly grateful for all the people I have met, for all the exciting projects I have started and completed, and for the new direction I have been given. My sincere thanks go out to everyone affiliated with the Kidney Cancer Association for giving me their time, effort, and perpetual excitement. Although I am leaving the KCA as an intern, the KCA will never leave me, and I will always support it and everything it stands for.