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Meet Our 2017 Summer Interns!

Water Mission summer interns pose for a photo.

Water Mission values the hardworking, can-do attitude of everyone who walks through the door – including our interns! This summer, we had the privilege of welcoming nine incredible college students and graduates to our headquarters. Their talents are indispensable to the work we do in providing safe water to people around the world. Meet them below! 

Corey Messer, Production Engineering Intern
From: Elkview, West Virginia
College: Liberty University
Studying: Industrial and Systems Engineering

Why did you want to intern with Water Mission? 
To help Water Mission become more efficient and effective with the tools and skills God has given to the organization.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? The Rework Reduction Project, which includes analyzing the most common defects and parts that need to be reworked in the Living Water Treatment System (LWTS) and Chlorinator production, then determining how to prevent these defects from happening in the field.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. Finishing the Bay Three 5s Project. We organized the largest storage area at Water Mission and created a sustainable system for future maintenance. Now the production team’s morale has improved and workplace efficiency has increased.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Applying my classroom studies to real-world scenarios, and seeing in person many of the topics that I have studied surrounding manufacturing and production.

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Visiting different coffee shops in the evening, and hammocking under the Folly Pier.

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? Floating down the Edisto River with other interns and Water Mission staff.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? Working in the United States or in another country with a mission organization, while traveling to unreached people groups sharing the Gospel.

Jenni worked as an intern for Water Mission.

Jenni Sinon, Production Management Intern
From: Poughkeepsie, NY
College: Liberty University
Studying: Industrial and Systems Engineering

Why did you want to intern with Water Mission? 
I wanted to intern for Water Mission so that I may allow the passions that stir the affections of my heart to be used for the purpose of the Gospel. It has become increasingly clear to me that as followers of Christ we are called to be an epicenter of love and gratitude and that our urgency to serve will become an outflow of those two gifts.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? I was fully prepared for the “get your boss coffee” intern experience; however, that is so far from the reality of what I have been given the opportunity to do! So far, my favorite project is writing code and logic for the cost analysis of all the assemblies that are manufactured at Water Mission. Working at a real organization is different than anything I’ve experienced. This is because the work that is done is no longer perfectly written hypothetical situations and answers in a textbook; rather, you are given the responsibility to discover the question and define the answer.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. Though this is not a specific event, I am proud of the friends I have made while being in college. I have been so blessed to have the opportunity to surround myself with people who are continuously pushing me to know the Lord deeper.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Definitely the professional, Jesus-loving, and hardworking staff, volunteers, and interns! Every member of the staff is so incredibly knowledgeable about their field of work and is so willing to share their wealth of knowledge with you. The volunteers are always ready and willing to turn a frown upside down and to share any one of their many puns with you. Lastly, my fellow interns! Spending an entire summer with some of the most fun people in the whole universe, in a really great city on the beach, is an opportunity that should not be passed up on!

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? The Moonlight Mixer on the Folly Beach Pier! This night (until 11 p.m.) will be full of dancing to songs including “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey, and “Single Ladies” by Beyoncé, with people of literally all ages (mostly above the age of 65). Also, it’s free if you go after 10 p.m.!

Where do you want to be in 10 years?  I hope to be working in operations research and manufacturing at a company that is using the skills and technology they have been given to minister to unreached people groups and those in the darkest regions of the world.

Katie poses for a photo at the Water Mission headquarters in North Charleston.

Katie Kelton, Third Party Fundraising Intern
From: Georgetown, TX
College: Texas A&M University
Studying: Marketing

Why did you want to intern with Water Mission? 
I was seeking a way to combine my skills and area of interest with the kingdom of God and wanted to work with people who shared a common vision. Water Mission has given me that opportunity – plus, the organization is incredible at what they do!

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? Planning the Scotty’s Ride Reception to welcome 13-year-old Scotty Parker home from his bike ride across the country! It’s so fun getting to do the behind-the-scenes work for this celebration – all the little details add up to simply giving Scotty a big thank you for his heart and accomplishment.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. Jetting off to Santa Rosa de Copan, Honduras all alone in the summer of 2015 and creating a life there. Also, eating queso with Mary Claire and Jenni at least twice a week.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Everyone is so Kingdom-minded and knowledgeable about their expertise – I learn so much from each staff member. And there is a constant supply of snacks!

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Watch the sunset on the beach next to Fort Moultrie. Participate in a sailing competition. Attempt (fail at) surfing. Stay at the Airbnb on Snaggy Mountain in Asheville. Dance at the Moonlight Mixer on Folly. Go to Harris Teeter and eat free samples.

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? Driving to Asheville for a weekend to sleep in a shack, explore the city, dance at a Latin music festival, sing live Gospel music, and visit Chimney Rock.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? Wherever the Lord takes me – hopefully working in the nonprofit sector. I have a vision of living among the people I am serving, whether that means moving to an inner-city area in the U.S. or to a foreign country.

Zach worked as an intern for Water Mission.

Zach Girvin, Innovation Engineering Intern
From: Greenville, SC
College: Clemson
Studying: Bioengineering

Why did you want to intern with Water Mission? 
I wanted to do something different for the summer that was still in the realm of engineering. I also wanted to be in a place where I could grow spiritually and was interested in seeing what life in a non-profit looks like.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? I enjoyed setting up a testing system for a valve from eWater. This was my first project that combined building a PLC unit, coding the PLC, and building the PVC testing assembly.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. My proudest accomplishment of the summer so far has been winning the First Annual Underwater Intern Handstand Challenge. A close second would be finishing off two baskets of Jim’n’Nick’s cornbread.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Free lunch, a huge collection of tools in bay two, and huddle.

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Star tipping on Folly, Tuesday night WEZL concerts, volleyball at the Folly pier, and ghost crab hunting at the beach.

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? My favorite adventures have involved playing volleyball, surfing, and hanging out at Folly.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? I hope to be a practicing medicine somewhere in the southeast, raising a family, and following whatever path God wants me to be on.

Mary Claire worked as an intern for Water Mission.

Mary Claire Nabors, General Engineering Intern
From: Birmingham, AL
College: Auburn University, Class of 2017
Studying: Civil Engineering

Why did you want to intern at Water Mission? I have always wanted to work in a field that is striving to end the global water crisis; that’s why I chose to study civil engineering. I knew that interning at Water Mission would be an opportunity to apply my engineering degree to a cause that I am very passionate about, while gaining experience in a professional environment.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? I have been doing a lot of work on AutoCAD, which I had never used before this summer. It is a useful skill to have and it has been so cool to create drawings that will one day come to life in a refugee camp in Tanzania. I truly feel like my work is valued, my initials are on the drawing, and I am helping to accomplish a bigger goal.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. My proudest accomplishment would have to be graduating from college with an engineering degree. It was hard and I almost changed my major a few times, but walking across that stage at graduation really was an incredible feeling. Even though going to, and graduating from college was something that I had expected myself to do, actually doing it and doing it well was a big accomplishment.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? I have really loved getting to hear everyone’s story of how they ended up Water Mission. God brings people together in beautiful ways and it’s been so cool to hear the different stories that people are willing to share. In general, I just love learning from such an experienced and passionate group of people.

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Eat as much queso as possible. You can never go wrong with queso. Also, go to the Moonlight Mixer at the pier on Folly Beach, it’s free after 10!

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? We went surfing a few times and it’s so much fun. I’m terrible and I get beat up by the waves but I have a good time pretending to be some cool surfer chick when I carry the board. Another would be participating in a sailing competition, which was amazing.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? I hope to be working to end the global water crisis. Whether that’s somewhere like Water Mission or abroad, I do want to be a part of this movement.

Georgia worked as an intern for Water Mission.

Georgia Humphries: Public Health Intern
From: Conway, SC
College: College of Charleston
Studying: Public Health

Why did you want to intern at Water Mission? I wanted to gain experience working in the public health field, and it was an added bonus that it is a Christian organization. I appreciate that the core values of Water Mission are not only to improve physical health, but spiritual health as well.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? The Kohler Clarity Household Water Treatment System poster presentation for the UNC Water & Health Policy Conference.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. Working for Water Mission while also having two other public health related internships. I’m thankful that Water Mission offered me a part time position, so I was able to gain experience working in other public health settings in the Charleston area.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Being able to be a part of an organization close to home that is making an impact worldwide.

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Sunset walk around the Battery. 

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? Paddle boarding in Mount Pleasant, and then a picnic at Patriot’s Point.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? I will have a master’s degree in public health and my PhD in maternal and child health. I hope to work in a women’s clinic or an organization focused on women and children’s health. I want to use my education and experience to go and serve in the Lewspa Timoun nutrition clinic with my church’s partner in Haiti.

Brett worked as an intern for Water Mission.

Brett Tighe: Visual Media Intern
From: Alpharetta, Georgia
College: The College of Charleston
Studying: Communications & Photography

Why did you want to intern at Water Mission? I wanted to work in an environment where I knew I would be appreciated, accepted, and pushed to achieve my best possible work.

What’s your favorite project so far in your internship? The interview video of Scotty Parker and Mayor Tecklenburg.

Tell us about your proudest accomplishment. Being placed as a YoungLife leader.

What’s been the best part of working at Water Mission’s HQ? Getting to know the staff and other interns!

What should everyone add to their Charleston bucket list? Go to H&R Sweet Shop in Old Village.

What has been your favorite Charleston adventure this summer? Riverdogs game with the other interns.

Where do you want to be in 10 years? In Charleston, employed as a photographer.

Amedee and Maraia

We also had the privilege of having Maraia Tremarelli and Amedee Ngarukiye serve with us this summer as Public Health interns!

Maraia is currently enrolled in Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health earning a master’s degree in global epidemiology. She was born in Philadelphia, PA but grew up not too far from Charleston in Hilton Head Island, SC. She is passionate about traveling and experiencing different cultures.

Amedee was born and raised in Kigali, Rwanda, and moved to the USA when he was 15. He graduated from Oregon State University with bachelor’s degrees in public health and international studies, and a minor in psychology. He is currently in his first year at Emory University studying global health and infectious disease.


That’s a wrap on our amazing 2017 Summer Interns! We are incredibly grateful for each intern and the hard work they put into the summer. While we’re sad to see them go, we are excited for all they are going to accomplish in this next season and look forward to seeing what God has in store for them.

Currently, six internship opportunities are open for the Fall 2017 semester. Applications are due August 11. To learn more and apply, click here.

INTERN WITH WATER MISSION

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