The deadline for our mini golf installation is four weeks away, and there are still so many missing pieces. One of my biggest challenges this week was not with people—it was with geometry.

I had the following list of items:

24” putter: 10 clubs
27” putter: 10 clubs
29” putter: 10 clubs
33” putter: 10 clubs
35” putter: 10 clubs
37” putter: 10 clubs
10 boxes of 150 mini pencils
Score cards
Roughly 1,000 golf balls
Tarps & bungee cords
6’ table (36.5" x 29.6" x 3" folded)
Folding chairs (2)
Tent (7” x 7” x 52” folded)

My task was to find (or build) a lockable storage solution for these items that is inexpensive, compact, and both durable enough to last three months outdoors and temporary enough that it can easily be removed once the fall weather arrives.

I found a storage solution. We ordered it from Home Depot. I hope my ability to perform simple geometry didn’t fail me.

Logistical problems have been the bulk of my work at my internship. This geometrical challenge is simply one example of the problems I’ve faced. I must not forget that solving problems is more or less the definition of feeling fulfilled as a human.


Over the past few weeks I’ve gone to multiple trauma informed care trainings, and though I’m happy to be equipped with the tools I need to be a better teacher and mentor for children, I’m pretty fed up with going to trauma informed care trainings. Not because I don’t care about the trainings, but because I’m disgusted with the conditions we put our children through and I’m starting to feel traumatized by all the stories of trauma. I went to a training where a psychiatrists showed us brain scans of children that had been traumatized and those that had not, the children having been through trauma had noticeably smaller parts of the frontal lobe. As someone who has taken multiple neuroscience classes at Hopkins, I had a mix of emotions when I saw these scans. One being shock, that this was the first time I had seen these scans even though I go to supposedly one of the best schools for neuroscience in the US. Secondly, I felt anger towards important spokespeople like Ben Carson (Former Hopkins neuroscientist and current political puppet) who denounce the impact of trauma on life outcome and success, when neuroscience scans prove that it causes deficits to the brain. Thirdly, I felt an overwhelming feeling of sadness for the fact that we are putting our children through this. Fourthly, I felt frustration that our society hasn’t progressed past trauma informed care trainings, to trauma prevention trainings. I don’t mind adjusting and being aware for trauma, but I would much rather prefer if my kids didn’t have to go through the pain and suffering of trauma in the first place. In our training we learned that children’s brains can bounce back with love and compassion which works as a form of rehabilitative medicine, but wouldn’t it be better if love and compassion were just a piece of candy that boosts and brightens a child’s day? These kids are amazing, and I wish everyone treated them with the respect and love they deserve.


This week however, I ran into someone who since March has been homeless. He asked me for money, saying that he would buy two bars of soap in front of me with the money. He pressured me insistently, and uncomfortable with the pressure yet wanting to help, I decided to do so. However, I wanted to do more than just give him money, so afterwards I tried to start a conversation with him and refer him to some health services that I knew of. When I left however, I left with mixed feelings.

Did I really help this person? Even though I had given him money and some referrals, for all I know I might have just reinforced his helplessness. He was clearly used to pressuring people for money and dependent on it for survival. Even a referral to a shelter might be further reinforcement. With shelters, you are at the mercy of whether or not there’s room in the shelter that night, and they are often emergency-only with no long term case management to get individuals off the streets.

This question of whether you are really making a difference is just as strong in a community arts program like Jubilee. It’s incredibly difficult to measure what a mural gives a community. How do you measure increased creativity? How do you measure life skills development? How do you measure empowerment?

I talked to one of my supervisors about this question. She gave an example of how difficult this is: if you want to measure life skills development, perhaps you can measure the level of college attainment of youth. This statistic is relatively high for graduates from the Jubilee Arts Youth in Business program that many youth enter from the summer program. However, this is still an adjacent measure. Not everyone wants to go to college or even can afford to go to college.

What really makes a difference? I don’t know, but I’ll never find out unless I keep asking this question.


Glitter shimmering, shaved ice with so many colors you didn’t know even existed, and more laughter than I’d heard in a while. You’d think I were talking about a circus or a carnival even. But no, this was PRIDE! One of the biggest and greatest events on this very planet. I don’t just say that because I’m working for the organization that single-handedly organizes and executes the event (parade, block party, festival, and all!!!), but because it’s true. Where else are you only going to find love and happiness- true freedom of expression. I think THIS is what our constitution was talking about when it says “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” And yes, the days were long and sunny, sweat definitely dripped from my forehead (maybe from the cotton candy colored wig I was sporting), and I had way more sugar than should be permitted, but it was so fantastic. I cannot imagine the grace and patience it took to create this masterpiece of beautiful bodies, singing bodies, bodies in speedos and tutus. It is truly remarkable.

Flash forward to this week. I was a little worried that this would be the peak and the rest of my internship would not be so colorful. I have no idea why that idea even popped up, as if being in an LGBTQ community center isn’t fun enough. But anyways, I was worried. And especially because my supervisor would be gone all week. What was I going to do? Who would I talk to? Would I just be sitting here staring at my computer screen and listening to the ticking of my watch until the end of the day? No. That’s a silly thing to think. I’ve been able to create projects out of the blue and do them- really do them. No micromanaging. No passive-aggression from staff. They really do trust me and I am so grateful. Because of this freedom- this true freedom- I’m working on so many creative projects and developing my software skills. I’m making flyers, giveaway advertisements, a map project, a website mockup, and so much more. This summer is truly a summer for personal and professional development as well as for really learning more about myself and what I love… I just hope the same is happening for my peers.


The design team has been working on a project for the Baltimore City Health Department and I was asked to begin to help and get involved with the group and I had a great time. I have gotten to organize an interview session with other Baltimore youth (with the help of another CIIP Intern!) and was able to sit in on their conversations and see how they come up with their projects. I was blown away by the professionalism and ideas that the students had as well as felt like I was able to contribute to the discussions going on. This second week, I have begun to understand my place in the office and really have enjoyed the time I have spent here.