Meet Tracy Lin, an Alianza summer intern through Health Career Connection. The Coachella Valley High School graduate and UC Berkeley economics major worked closely with our Community Justice Campaign on its recent survey of local students and parents.
Lin, 20, grew up in Coachella as the child of Chinese immigrants. As she winds down her internship and prepares to go back to campus, Lin sat for an interview about what her internship experience has taught her.
How did you get connected with the HCC internship program?
My siblings recommended the Health Career Connection organization to me, so I applied through that and they matched me with Alianza.
Were you already familiar with Alianza?
Not really. Before my internship, I did some research. I think it’s a really helpful organization. Before, I didn’t know there’s actually an organization that’s helping the East Coachella Valley community. It’s really nice to know we have this organization that’s actually helping the community. It’s refreshing.
Are you interested in working in a health field?
Not really, but I saw on the HCC website that they had this opportunity for me to use my knowledge in economics and my passion for community justice to work with an organization that benefits my community.
What was your internship experience like?
This internship is a full-time internship, so seven hours per day on the weekdays. The work I’ve done is on the District Budget Survey data analysis report. I dived deep and analyzed the needs of the community. We identified the Wellness Centers as a need of our community and youth, and we found other needs within the school, like more resources on campus. [Coachella Valley Unified School District plans to open Wellness Centers starting with the new school year.]
It gave me a lot of flashbacks to my high school experience. When I was in high school, I was involved with other community organizations that also sought community justice for more education resources. The survey related to my personal experiences and helped me envision my future and also the future of the community.
What role did you play in the survey?
I did the data analysis for the survey. Basically, I was provided with all of the responses for the survey. I put it in a spreadsheet, I organized it, and I created charts and visuals so people who review the report have a more straightforward illustration of the data. I also wrote the report.
What is something interesting you learned from the data?
I think a big takeaway is the miscommunication with the stakeholders and the [CVUSD] school district. There are a lot of parents and students demanding transparency. There are a lot of things they want to have more information about: the district, their schools, and information on the budget and how the money is spent.
I was in high school four years ago and students are still demanding the same things. The school hasn’t changed much. When I was in school, students wanted more AP resources and career resources. Back when I was in high school, Spanish was the only foreign language available to students. Other schools had French and other languages. It’s sad to see they don’t have the same educational resources.
What are your goals right now for after college?
First, my goal is to find a job. I haven’t determined what area I want to specialize in. There are many opportunities with economics. I’ve been taking accounting classes, but I still don’t know what will fit me the most.
The short-term goal is to identify my dream career and something I am capable of doing. I want to get a job, settle down a little bit and then in the future, I will find opportunities to give back to my community similar to the work I did with Alianza.