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Department of English

Internships: Literacy Nonprofit

Tucker Wilson and Reader

Intern: Tucker Wilson, BA in English with emphasis in creative writing & in Spanish

Faculty Supervisor: Carol Franko, Associate Professor & Undergraduate Advisor, Department of English

Course: ENGL 495 English Internship (External Internship)

Semester: Summer 2011

An English and Spanish double major, Tucker Wilson completed an internship the summer after his sophomore year in 2011 at Open Books in Chicago, IL. Open Books is a nonprofit organization that runs a used bookstore and provides literacy programs for inner city Chicago students. Tucker worked 30 hours per week as a literacy intern, with responsibilities such as leading the Open Books Buddies Program, conducting creative writing field trips for elementary students, developing new field trip curricula, and writing blog posts. As a senior set to graduate in May 2013, Tucker says, “Looking back on my college career, this internship was one of the, if not the biggest, turning points. It was a perfect opportunity to try out teaching and tutoring in the inner city environment, and after that, it changed me in a lot of ways. It changed my future aspirations.”

A considerable amount of researching and planning went into Tucker’s internship experience. Tucker had ambitions to complete an internship earlier in his college career to see if teaching in an inner-city environment was a good match for him. In Spring 2011, along with his supervisor Carol Franko, he spent time pursuing and applying for internships in the Chicago area. In addition, he applied for and was awarded the Mark A. Chapman Scholarship, so he could fund his nonprofit internship. Throughout the experience, Carol noted that, “Tucker did [everything] for his own enrichment. He used the internship to explore potential careers.” Tucker allowed the internship to mold his career goals, using the internship as a launching pad into other opportunities that further cultivated his future endeavors, such as seeking a second internship at the K-State Writing Center (read interview here).