| Categories: EV Enthusiasts, Events, Featured | Tags: , 100% electric2016electric vehicleElectric vehicleseventsEVsfort collinsinterninternshipnorthern coloradoride and drive
When people ask me what I do as an intern with Drive Electric Northern Colorado, it’s always difficult for me to find just one response. Every day with DENC brings a different experience with new opportunities, and there isn’t something that I monotonously “do” the same on a day-to-day basis. Through my internship, I am able to work on a variety of tasks, expanding my skillset, and gaining invaluable knowledge from a host of incredible people.
Over the past seven months, I have had the opportunity to meet inspiring people in the communities of Loveland and Fort Collins. From our EV Enthusiast meetings every month, to our partners at the local dealerships, to the amazing leadership at the cities of Fort Collins and Loveland, and my DENC co-workers, I am constantly inspired by the passion and dedication of the people who I am connected with. I do not believe I could have gained the same real-world experience working in such diverse roles in any other internship, and I feel fortunate to have been able to spend time a part of the DENC team!
If you have driven an EV before, you can probably guess one of my favorite perks of the job is getting to cruise Northern Colorado in a variety of EVs like the BMWi3, Chevy Volt, Mitsubishi iMiEV, Nissan LEAF, Ford Focus Electric and Fusion Energi, Cadillac ELR, and even the Tesla Model S! When I first joined the Drive Electric Northern Colorado team, I felt a connection to the energy of the events, and the enthusiasm that the rest of the team had, but I knew very little about electric vehicles. After I was hired, I quickly began researching EV technology and learning all the amazing advances these vehicles have made and continue to make. EVs were a new experience for me, and it has been exhilarating to learn about new things like the public charging network, how to charge an EV at home, and the benefits of going electric—like a quiet cabin and high-torque motor. After my first drive, I quickly realized how easy it is to become an advocate for EVs, and why so many in our community are passionate about spreading the message. I see how Fort Collins and Loveland have been able to create this great microcosm of EV enthusiasm and EV engagement.
While I can’t say enough great things about my time working with DENC, it has also come with many professional challenges. DENC works hard to bring Ride and Drive opportunities to our community members, so our summers are filled with long, hot days, and plenty of lessons in event planning and executing a seamless Ride and Drive. The support DENC receives from volunteers in Northern Colorado is vital to our success, so I have also learned about what it takes to support and recruit a strong network of volunteers. Sharing in the fun moments, as well as the tough times, alongside the amazing people who dedicate their free time working to improve our community, and ultimately the nation, is nothing less than inspiring. Our EV Enthusiasts and DENC volunteers have been instrumental in helping accelerate EV adoption, and make my “job” as an intern easier and more fun by supporting us and spending their extra time advocating for EVs with us!
Working for DENC has proved to be a fulfilling job that actually doesn’t feel like much of a “job” at all. I am so proud to be a part of an organization that is truly making a difference in Northern Colorado, and across the country! I am excited to see what 2016 has in store for our program!