In a cozy corner of Stewart Memorial Library, Ally Roeker ’22 can be found pouring over fellow students’ work in the Coe College Writing Center.
“It’s never boring,” she said.
Ally is a member of this vibrant hub of conversation where she coaches fellow students as a peer consultant and executive function coach in one of the largest student-run undergraduate writing centers in the country. This summer, Ally is taking her coaching talents to a second writing center. She was selected to intern at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia writing center after Coe Writing Center Director and Assistant Professor of Rhetoric Jane Nesmith encouraged her to apply.
“It’s super exciting. It is one of the first workplace writing centers that has been established.
It’s really cool to see how things we do at a college writing center are being transferred and changed for the workplace setting,” Ally said.
The federal reserve writing center was established to help bank examiners improve the clarity of complex written reports. It’s been a successful effort so far, and Ally will help continue to promote a strong writing culture.
She is working virtually alongside three full-time consultants. Her responsibility is to support about 40 other interns across all departments. She is coordinating and hosting workshops on writing and presentation skills while also providing one-on-one consultations and collecting data on the effectiveness of writing centers in the workplace.
As her senior year approaches, Ally is excited to receive practical experience in networking with other professionals — something she knows will be handy after college.
“My manager wants to make sure that this is fulfilling for me so I am having interviews with people in the office to learn more about what they do and how they got to where they are.
I really connected to someone I interviewed in internal communications. She was so open about everything she was doing in her job and how she got there a decade ago as an intern to have a career there,” Ally said.
In addition to gaining hands-on experience and building connections in her internship, Ally is diving into research this summer looking through digitized newspaper articles from the 1840s. She is Associate Professor Amber Shaw’s research assistant studying Voice of Industry, a newspaper advocating labor reform in the height of the American Industrial Revolution.
“I’m finding really interesting things, and when it directly fits Dr. Shaw’s research I get really excited. It’s so valuable doing research as an undergraduate, which is a lot of what English and humanities majors do if they are doing graduate school,” she said. “I’m incredibly lucky Dr. Shaw asked if I would be interested in doing research. I immediately said yes. I already had the internship planned, and I didn’t even stop to think.”
Ally was first drawn to the subject in Amber’s class of 19th century bestsellers written by women, inspiring the focus for her senior thesis.
Ally’s connection with Jane and Amber certainly fueled the opportunity to branch out. At Coe, relationships are valued because they lead to mentors and internships. As a result, The Princeton Review ranked Coe 10th nationally on its Best Schools for Internships among private colleges list.
“The moral of the story is they are both wonderful human beings. Coe does an excellent job in hiring amazing faculty that want their students to succeed,” she said.
Ally’s opinions are not representative of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.