BHC student fights hunger at internship

BHC student Yvette Adjakpa is growing her résumé while helping feed her community.

The business management and marketing student is interning at River Bend Foodbank in Davenport this semester.

Adjakpa’s internship includes managing the nonprofit’s social media accounts, creating fliers, and helping coordinate River Bend Foodbank events.

River Bend Foodbank has a service area of 23 counties in eastern Iowa and western Illinois and distributes food to 300 partner agencies.

The nonprofit’s partners include food pantries, shelters, soup kitchens, residential treatment facilities, day care centers and senior centers.

Tackling projects as a team

One rewarding experience for Adjakpa was working on the Student Hunger Drive, which she said is a huge team effort that is about more than collecting food.

It gives high school students the opportunity to develop organizational and life skills as they work to accomplish a common goal – combating hunger.

She worked on the six-week campaign from its planning stages to the end by creating and executing a social media plan.

“Yvette is a very hard worker and is willing to do any project I give her,” said Jennifer Schroder, marketing specialist for River Bend Foodbank. “Her enthusiasm to learn is exciting.”

Schroder noted interns at River Bend Foodbank work as part of a team to help solve hunger in the region while gaining real world experience in the marketing field.

“Internships are such a valuable part of a student’s educational experience,” Schroder said.

BHC experiences

Adjakpa’s journey at Black Hawk College began with the English as a Second Language (ESL) program after she moved to the United States from Togo, a country in west Africa.

The Moline resident is now earning an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management and marketing and will graduate in May 2019.

Her degree requires an internship where the student spends 240 hours working in their field, and BHC Career Services helped her find this opportunity.

Black Hawk College’s Career Navigator, Megan Hasselroth, helps students seek out and apply for internships. Some instructors help connect students with internships as well.

Career Services also offers BHC students and the community help with résumés, cover letters, application process navigating, mock interviews and following up on job offers.

Adjakpa said her internship experience and the opportunity to meet and network with other professionals will have a significant impact on her career.

She is excited to graduate and knows she is well-prepared, but it is a little bittersweet.

“I’ll miss my teachers and friends that I’ve gotten to know through my years here,” Adjakpa said. “I received a quality education at an affordable price.”

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