Hi! I’m Caroline McCully. A year ago around this time, I wrote my first blog for VeryVera. I was an intern, fresh out of my first year of college, and everything was new to me, from sending professional emails to having my own desk. I arrived at the Cottage armed with my laptop and my agenda, and when I walked out for the last time in August, I was amazed at how much I had learned and grown.

But I didn’t know the half of it.

Fast forward one year later, and I’m sitting at my desk with my laptop and my agenda, but I’m a thousand miles away from home. This summer, I’m filling the position of Marketing Intern for Maine Media Workshops and College in Rockport, Maine. It’s the same position I had last year, but this year I feel like a sort of “Intern 2.0”–I’ve done this once before. Because I have those three months’ worth of experience, I feel completely and totally prepared. The parallels between this job and my work at VeryVera have not been lost on me. Last summer, I bobbed around the kitchen and craft room, capturing images of VeryVera Cooking campers, and this summer I’m documenting photographers, filmmakers, and artists creating in their chosen medium. I’m posting on Instagram and Facebook just as I did last year, and I’m strategizing with the rest of the marketing department, forming ideas and making goals- all for the second time.

When I left VeryVera at the end of my last day, Vera gave me a thoughtful note and a book, both of which I still have. But the real gift that I received that summer was the experience–the ups and downs, the challenges, the firsts–all gifts that will keep on giving for years to come. Whether I’m working back in my hometown of Augusta, Georgia or across the country, the lessons that I learned at VeryVera ensure that my laptop, my agenda, and I are ready for anything!