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Robert Tarter

Youth Volunteer

I am a student at Arizona State University studying International Trade.


My experience at Sculpt was transformative. From the outset, my supervisors Maija and Sophia guided me through tasks I had no prior experience in, and helped me produce work I am proud of. My time at Sculpt enabled me to develop research, writing, editing and communication skills I could not have received anywhere else.


I was interviewed by both Maija and Sophia. I was nervous and concerned that I would be out of place, as I was not sure what they would make of me as an American. Right from the start, my supervisors made me feel welcome and included. Based on this interview alone I knew I had found an organization that would help me by promoting my interests and advancing my career.


My overarching responsibility at Sculpt was to identify, research, and then draft a consultation response. I had little experience working in a professional environment, and no experience in policy work. Maija and Sophia were of course aware of this and so provided me with support wherever I needed it. I had a million questions and each was answered promptly and thoughtfully. Throughout the entirety of the internship, from the initial research to the final formatting, I received feedback and assistance. I worked by myself a long way from London, and yet my supervisors were with me every step of the way.


Doing an online internship is challenging for a number of reasons – some apparent and others not. Getting to know the people and organization I worked for was not easy to do over Zoom. What’s more, my lack of experience meant I had to learn everything over calls and emails. Nevertheless, I was able to succeed and even thrive working for Sculpt due to the people I worked with, and the structure of the internship itself. I met with Maija and Sophia at least once a week, and in these calls we discussed everything from our daily lives to the current project. These calls made me feel accepted and part of something bigger than myself, and for those reasons I cherished them. The structure of the internship was perfectly suited for a full-time student located across the world. I was assigned tasks and responsibilities over a meeting, and was given a deadline for completion. I was free to email and set up calls and meetings, options I exercised less than I probably should have. The combination of clear purpose and flexibility made this internship fun, engaging, and rewarding.


Interning at Sculpt has given me experience, confidence, and the knowledge that I can succeed working in an environment relevant to my interests. The people I worked under and had the opportunity to meet were friendly, interesting, and dedicated. My time spent with Sculpt has been invaluable, and I cannot recommend an internship here enough. I will conclude by thanking Maija and Sophia, and wishing Sophia the best of luck on her next venture.