As an intern for both the Communications and Community Engagement departments of Settlement Music School, I've had the opportunity to report to two different people, Adam Johnston, the Community Engagement Manager, and Christopher Spangler, the Director of Marketing & Communications. The experience has been less complicated than it sounds (I promise) and that's probably the product of one significant fact: I have two great, understanding bosses.
For me, Settlement has been a place of learning, growth, and passion. On the Communications side of business, I've learned about marketing strategy and storytelling. On the Community Engagement side of things, I've learned about the power of partnerships and the intricacies of arts education in Pennsylvania. The reconciliation of both aspects of Settlement has been invaluable. I've learned to look at marketing through the grander picture of fostering community and I've looked at community partnerships through the lens of creating a worthwhile marketing effort. The two go hand-in-hand, something I previously did not predict.
Every Monday of every week, I sit in Christopher Spangler's office with Adam Johnston in a chair next to me. These are essentially our small team meetings where I could visibly see my function as an intern form, as both departments come together under one roof to create a plan. In that office, I have found that collaboration is truly the fundamental seed for progress. Observing the cooperation between Mr. Spangler and Mr. Johnston has been inspiring and has reaffirmed by belief in the effectiveness and necessity of teamwork.
One of the reasons why I believe that Settlement has found success is its emphasis on a collaborative environment. At Settlement, as exhibited in the title of my own internship position, fostering conversations between the different parts of the school is what makes this place feel so whole and like a family. Settlement is at its core an example of the sentiment that people are stronger together. A sense of community within the office and within the greater city is what we're working for here, and I'm proud to be a part of it, if only for a little bit longer.