Stephanie Ingraham ’13 interned with the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection as part of the Levitt Public Service Internship program this past summer. Ingraham worked in the sector for Material and Solid Waste Management on a team that dealt particularly with permits and licensing for landfills, transfer stations, and resource recovery facilities. “It was exciting to see the permits, proposals and amendments first hand and to be a part of the team that sets these policies in motion,” she said.
Ingraham also had the opportunity to go out into the field during her internship. Her first trip was to a site known as the “tire pond” that the state took over because the owner had created a fire hazard by illegally dumped 15-30 million tires into the pond. At another site contaminants were identified in the soil. The state agency had to remediate the area by removing driveways, porches, walkways, and the top four feet of soil, and then covered each area with an impermeable tarp and four feet of clean soil. The final site Ingraham got to visit was an ash landfill, created by the incineration of debris from construction and demolition. “Having the opportunity to visit these sites was a valuable experience for me because it allowed me to see firsthand the areas that I had been working on permits for,” said Ingraham. “After becoming so familiar with the facilities on paper, it was great to be able to see the operation in person and talk to the workers onsite.”
This internship helped Ingraham get a better idea of what she might like to pursue when she graduates. “Although my experience working for the state has been nothing but positive, I think I am going to first look for jobs in the private sector,” she said. Having a chance to work in the public sector was a valuable experience for Ingraham, and one that would not have been possible without the support of Levitt Center funding. “This internship funding has helped me enormously by allowing me to gain valuable work experience and insight about potential career choices,” she said.