Carlos Lopez ’22 — I was blessed with the opportunity to intern at Emergency Management in Montgomery County. First, I want to say thank you to Dr. Roy Kaplan, Associate Dean Roland Morin, and everyone else at the Career Services Office for giving me this and many more opportunities. Second, I want to thank Brian Campbell, Sherri Harrington, and Jessica Burget for bringing me in at Emergency Management and providing me a second home. I know that the experiences and connections that I received from my internship have allowed me to excel in my professional career. Going into this internship, I didn’t know what to expect. I never was interested in local government or emergency management but when I was approached with this opportunity, I was quickly able to connect the dots. I am someone that is very interested in business and management. My major is in Art and my minors are in business and economics. Emergency management is very similar to project management. From conducting a very efficient pathway of communication to multitasking many different projects. They fall almost all the way in track where I was able to learn a lot in my internship.

For the beginning of my internship, I completed the FEMA Incident Management Pre-requisites (IS-100, 200, 700, 800) and the FEMA Professional Development Series (IS-120.c, 230.e, 235.c, 240.b, 241.b, 242.b, 244.b). In these courses, I was able to receive a certificate and the knowledge of Emergency Management, National Incident Management System (NIMS), Incident Command System, and way more. Through the Internship, I was able to tag along to County Council Meeting, Joint Commissioner & County Council meeting, and many more. There and other locations I was able to establish connections with the Commissioners, Health Department workers, City workers, and many more. During this Internship, I was able to do a lot with the back of their building. From helping with placing the light towers, trailers, and street signboards, I was able to help the community with these resources for events like the Strawberry Festival, Tox-Away Day, and more. I was also able to help Sherri and Brian by creating an Inventory sheet and map to tidy up their warehouse.

In the internship, I was able to help develop planning projects for Active Shooter Functional Exercise. Emergency Management for Montgomery County was able to receive a grant last year right before COVID for an Active Shooter Exercise. Unfortunately, it was placed on pause while COVID-19 was at its peak. Luckily, we were able to pick it up in the summer of 2021. In this exercise, we were allowed the opportunity to provide trauma kits, tourniquets, emergency ladders to surrounding schools as well as providing the community with the opportunity to conduct a full-scale active shooter exercise.

Lastly, I want to thank the Dill Fund for providing me the opportunity to have this experience. Without it, the experience would not be possible!