Summer Interns Bring Fresh Ideas and New Ways to Strengthen CCSA’s Support

2021 summer interns

At Child Care Services Association (CCSA), we lead efforts to strengthen accessible and affordable quality early care and education by providing supports for families, communities and the workforce who have been struggling as we recover from this pandemic. So, we opened our doors looking for fresh ideas and new ways to strengthen CCSA’s support.

We often recruit volunteers and hire interns from surrounding colleges, universities and high schools to help drive our goals, better understand our communities and support future leaders. Due to COVID-19, the opportunity to work remotely allowed three interns from across North Carolina to join us this summer.

Peyton Kelly

Peyton Kelly, Communications Intern

A Cornelius, N.C., native, Peyton Kelly joins CCSA’s communications department this summer as our communications intern. Peyton said, “This particular position interested me because of CCSA’s mission and goals, as I am very passionate about children and the crucial role that proper care, nutrition and education plays in their development.”

As a rising senior at UNC-Chapel Hill, double majoring in psychology and communications with a minor in health and society, Peyton brings with her many great skills. She hopes to gain more skills in writing, developing presentations, social media analytics, graphic design and more. “I have already learned so much from working with unfamiliar platforms and sharpening my skills and knowledge in related areas,” Peyton said.

Some major projects of Peyton’s include analyzing CCSA’s social media platforms to better reach our followers; creating engaging social media graphics; conducting interviews of those we serve for future blog and newsletter articles and compiling research and data to summarize the progression of T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Scholarship and Child Care WAGE$® Programs over the last 10 years.

Peyton will graduate in spring 2022 with her bachelor’s degree. She shares her post-graduate aspirations, “I hope to go to graduate school at some point to earn either a masters or Ph. D. degree in either industrial-organizational psychology or interpersonal-organizational communications. I will likely take a gap year or two before graduate school to gain some more work experience and to allow myself ample time to figure out what programs I want to apply for.”

Alaa Hammoudeh

Alaa Hammoudeh, Durham PreK Intern

Double majoring in human development and family studies and public policy at UNC-Chapel Hill, Alaa Hammoudeh joins us this summer as a Durham PreK intern. She is a first-generation American from the occupied areas in Palestine, the West Bank.

“I applied [for this internship] because it perfectly aligns with my double major and education policy, which is what I want to do professionally!” Alaa said. “I hope to further understand what it means to be an organization that influences education policy and most importantly be one that services its community.”

As a Durham PreK intern, Alaa will be analyzing data for the need of pre-K in N.C. as a whole and understanding how many locations are offered compared to the demonstrated need through research and surveys. “Overall, the goal is to understand the need for the services that CCSA offers and use this as a baseline for better outreach (ultimately) through better understanding,” Alaa said.

Alaa graduates with her bachelor’s degree in August 2021. “[After graduation,] I hope to work in an organization similar to CCSA (or CCSA itself!) where I can build experience and knowledge on education policy as a whole and organizational needs within nonprofits,” she said. “I do plan on going to law or graduate school in a year or two, so I will be preparing for that simultaneously.”

Anna Sucsy

Anna Sucsy, Early Childhood Policy Intern

From the Madison La Follette School of Public Affairs master’s program at the University of Wisconsin, Anna Sucsy joins us this summer as our early childhood policy intern. A Southern Pines, N.C., native, Anna was looking for opportunities to work on early childhood policy in the Raleigh area when a former colleague connected her with CCSA President Marsha Basloe.

“I was drawn to CCSA’s systems thinking about early childhood policy problems, Marsha’s enthusiasm for her work, the opportunities to engage in early childhood policy in a meaningful way and the opportunity to get better connected to the Raleigh-area policy community,” Anna said.

Anna is primarily working on two projects this summer: (1) assessing the impacts of CCSA’s COVID-19 Relief Fund by following up with grant recipients to find out where they are now, almost a year after receiving grant funds, and (2) analyzing housing and early childhood policies as part of a project to better support children experiencing homelessness. “I am really excited about the opportunity to learn more about the intersection of early childhood policy and housing,” she said.

Anna graduates in spring 2022 with her master’s degree. She said, “My ultimate career goal is to have a leadership position advancing early childhood policy. I’m open to working in government or the non-profit sector.”

CCSA is fortunate to have such dedicated and passionate interns working with us as they contribute a great deal to CCSA’s work. If you are interested in interning or volunteering with CCSA, please contact us today.