Hi everyone! My name is Noah Bock, and I just completed my freshman year at the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts. While I am officially undecided on my major, I intend to study economics and apply to the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy this winter. This summer, I’ll be working for Detroit Public Television’s Great Lakes Now, researching and writing stories about the Great Lakes.
My first exposure to community was the geographic one I grew up in: a small town in southeast Michigan just north of Toledo that is undergoing a transition from an agricultural community to a commercial suburb. Once my horizons expanded beyond this bubble, I quickly realized that community is much more than simple geography. Throughout high school, I began to identify with communities grounded in shared passions and values. I found myself a part of many different communities, some which shared a love for music, or a love for the outdoors, or a passion for selfless service to others. For me, communities form whenever people unite around a characteristic that they share.
During high school, I became involved in a program called Youth Leadership Toledo (YLT), which other than helping me develop leadership skills, showed me how communities can make a difference. I found other high school students who shared my passion for access to early childhood education, and the small community we formed decided to conduct a region-wide children’s book drive. The project was a success, and we donated the collected books to a local nonprofit. I quickly learned the power of a community that pursues a common goal. Now, DCERP has given me the opportunity to become part of the Great Lakes Now community, at least for the summer. I know that my experience in YLT will shape the success of my project because YLT taught me that simply being part of the Great Lakes Now community will give me the power to make my project a success.
My work at Great Lakes Now is my first internship experience. Because of this, I am focusing on listening and learning as much as I can in the short time I have. I want to focus on developing my workplace communication skills, and I’m sure I will develop my listening skills in the process. I also want to delve deep into learning about any and every topic related to the Great Lakes that I have grown up enjoying, from the impact climate change is having on the Lakes to the controversy surrounding Line 5. I will be proud if at the end of the summer, I can feel confident in my understanding of the complex issues that surround the Great Lakes.
Let’s do this!