By Taylor Dorman (Intern - Public Information)
As an intern with District Seven, I am frequently asked what I will take away most from this internship. The knowledge I’ve gained and the experiences I’ve shared with the Public Information Office (PIO) easily come to mind when I begin to answer this question. However, The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has given me something I did not expect to receive when I first started this internship; a newfound perspective. When I first began my journey with FDOT, I did not truly understand the grueling process of bringing a project to life. I paid no special attention to the roadways and bridges I see on my daily commute.
Now, after being with District Seven for over six months, I have a new perspective, and a better understanding, of the transportation system. I can no longer pass by a road construction site without thinking of the logistics behind it and all the planning that took place at FDOT for this to become possible, or even drive on a bridge without contemplating the extensive amount of time and teamwork that went into planning and building such an immense project. As an intern with PIO, I’ve seen firsthand how demanding the public can be. Before, I was aware of how convenient it was for the public to call FDOT with complaints about road construction and congestion. However, after starting my internship with the Public Information Office, I now understand what it is like to be on the other side of that phone call and the extensive amount of work that goes into meeting the needs of the public.
Getting the opportunity to intern for FDOT has been an eye-opening experience. I have gained knowledge I can carry with me into the future and connected with people that I’ll never forget. I’ve also had the pleasure of witnessing up close the inner workings of District Seven and learning how all the departments work together to keep the agency running efficiently. I am in awe of the long hours the staff members contribute and how devoted they are to helping the public and bringing these transportation projects to life. When my internship comes to an end this year, I will leave knowing how lucky I am to have received such a rewarding opportunity. Like Henry Brook Adams once said: “All experience is an arch to build upon,” and I plan to use the experience I’ve gained at District Seven to build a successful future.