Student interns at ArtsQuest are working to bridge the gap between Lehigh and the South Side.
ArtsQuest is a non-profit organization that aims to provide Lehigh Valley residents with art, culture and educational programs.
Lehigh students Kayla Arestivo, ‘20, and Isabelle Mindel, ‘20, were accepted to intern at ArtsQuest this fall.
Arestivo, a journalism major, is a social media and digital marketing intern at ArtsQuest. The journalism major at Lehigh requires students to fulfill an internship requirement.
Arestivo said of the internships offered, her position at ArtsQuest, especially with its social media aspect, is the most relevant to something she wants to pursue in her career.
Arestivo said it is sometimes challenging to balance the internship and her school work.
“I also play on the women’s soccer team, so having regular class and then the internship, while being on the soccer team, is a lot to juggle,” Arestivo said.
However, she said the internship program has been really flexible because she is able to pick the hours that work best for her on a weekly basis.
Cory Stevens, the ArtsQuest volunteer and internship coordinator, explained how the internship program allows students to get under the hood of what makes a non-profit organization run.
“Marketing, public relations and graphic design are always looking for help nearly every semester,” Stevens said. “If we have students that are more business or management minded, they can work with our corporate sponsorship team and learn how non-profits generate new revenue.”
Stevens said there is a lot of opportunity within each department.
“On the more creative side, you have performing arts, cinema and comedy, administration and education internships that allow students to have a direct hand in ArtsQuest programming by working with the teams who select the talent and create our new events, or organize after school art programming,” he said.
The internships last a full semester and require between 15 to 25 hours of work each week.
Whether it is Oktoberfest in the fall, the SteelStacks Improv. Comedy Festival in the spring or MusikFest in the summer, interns work on nationally recognized events.
Stevens said a large proportion of ArtsQuest’s internship applications come from Lehigh students.
“It could just be the proximity, but I like to think that we’ve also done a great job in partnering with Lehigh faculty and staff to get the word out about unique opportunities that we offer,” Stevens said.
All four interns this semester are Lehigh students.
Mindel, another ArtsQuest fall semester intern, works with the production team and runs the sound and lighting for different events.
“I’m the first intern for this position, and it was great that ArtsQuest was able to make this new internship for me,” Mindel said. “I think that they are really willing to work with people.”
She said Stevens is really good about getting interns connected with employees at ArtsQuest that work in fields that align with their interests, regardless of which internships are listed on the website.
Mindel said if ArtsQuest is able to come up with an internship for a student, the organization will get it done.
“There are also a lot of concerts and music fests, and a bunch of my friends from Lehigh come to check it out, which is cool because I don’t think that they knew about it before, so I guess me working there brings more people in,” Mindel said.