My summer practicum flew by and as we’re all getting ready for in person classes soon, I find myself reflecting on my practicum work. I’m working with the North Carolina Against Sexual Assault (NCCASA) on creating a toolkit on preventing and detecting human trafficking on college and university campuses. While I still have a long way to go in finalizing my writing, converting it to a final toolkit, and presenting to key stakeholders, I feel like I have learned a lot in the anti-human trafficking sector. Working with NCCASA has strengthened my passion for the type of work I want to pursue. It is enraging to see on the news and in personal connections the pervasiveness of sexual violence. Before beginning my practicum, my anger was my motivation to work in the reproductive and sexual health justice field. After meeting with anti-human trafficking specialists, program implementation managers, and my preceptor weekly, I’m inspired by the type of work they do in such a compassionate manner. It is eye opening to experience working with individuals that care so deeply about the communities they work with and the anti-sexual violence movement. I feel hopeful when I see all that NCCASA does, and after reflecting, I realize that hope has been my motivation the last month or so – admittingly, a feeling I haven’t felt in a long time.

I’ve learned a lot about human trafficking in North Carolina and on how to engage universities in creating prevention and response strategies. I was able to assess survivor and student needs and propose strategies and programs for key stakeholders to adopt or adapt for their campus communities. My preceptor and I also highlighted the importance of working with communities who are disproportionately affected.

I only have two more weeks of my practicum left and I still feel like there is a lot to do in a short amount of time. While I work to ensure my deliverables are complete in a comprehensive way, I’ve been taking advantage of working online and have been able to travel safely. I visited my friend in New York City for a couple of weeks and we then took some time to wind down and work from home in upstate New York on a beautiful farm. While I miss working in person, I’m glad that I was able to travel around and visit good friends this summer.

Drinking our morning coffee on the porch at the farm.

Overlooking Manhattan from Williamsburg!

Reading through my peers’ blogs, I feel proud and impressed! I am excited to get back into the groove in person this time and hear about everyone’s experiences this summer. Here’s to meeting everyone face to face soon!