I've never thought how difficult it has become working from home every day. I live on campus approximately fifty miles away from Harpers Ferry Center.
I have roommates coming in and out of the room, not interacting with my supervisor in person, not sitting at the office, and other things that do not seem typical in professional settings. I must balance work and home, which is a challenge. I also get distracted at times. Not just distractions; unstable internet connections. Last week the electricity went down, affecting my work; I had to run to a coffee place. How could the internet not cooperate? How could someone be so comfortable at home in the middle of the conference? So many thoughts raced in my head.
I guess working from home is the new normal for everyone. Basically, life-changing. Perhaps, some companies decide better off being remote for decades. Some may be hybrid, just the high-functioning virtual practices such as Zoom. I think it is beneficial for those who are at health risk can join virtual meetings. Really, in many ways. But, again, some people may instead work onsite.
Working as a Media Accessibility intern for two months thus far bas been an eye-opening experience for me. A few weeks ago, my supervisor beeped, "Come to Harpers Ferry!" What? Yes! I estimated the trip budget all set for two days over there. I've never been on a business trip, nor has my family. Upon arrival, Harpers Ferry appeared to be a smaller town than I thought. My supervisor waved, "Hey!" We chatted on the way to the office then at my hotel. I've never felt so exhausted from a long rainy road, but worth the sound sleep.
I woke up to poor breakfast; no plant-based options for me. It did not matter. I was really excited for the day to finally experience the internship interaction, something alive. I met my supervisor with the American Sign Language interpreters; we all toured around the Harpers Ferry Center site. My supervisor told me the history; one of the places used to be a Black college I never knew. How enthralling things changed over time. I went to pick up my government computer afterward. Yeah, a government computer. As I mentioned, I've never been on a business trip; that felt odd for me to get something from the government. I met the other interns who specialize in different areas which never ceased to amaze me; I had a lovely meal with them. The offices I walked past, even the smell from coffee beans I'd not let go. The whiteboard I'd throw my ideas at. Many things I'd do in the work settings. Oh, that was something I would crave for every day than at home. I'd not emphasize enough how difficult it has been for me to work remotely. Maybe, I am stuck in the millennial era so are we all. Who knows, the next generation might better off remote infinitely; all the workspaces be vacant. Who's ready for that? Definitely not me.
Agency: National Park Service
Location: Harpers Ferry Center for Media Services