ISF's 2023 summer intern class.

Reflecting on ISF’s 2023 Summer Intern Program

Saying Bye to our 2023 Intern Class

by Ashton Barlow, Intern Program Director

Our internship program, sponsored by Viva Chicken, ended strong this summer with the interns raising $101,235 for ISF! Our intern leads and volunteers had a blast working together at Hygge, participating in our 3rd annual golf tournament, going on community excursions, meeting local community leaders, and even throwing their 2nd Float-A-Thon. 

We would like to give a special thank you to all of our community partners who helped out this summer and made it such a fun experience for our interns. Over the course of the summer…

Viva Chicken sponsored our program and catered our kick-off lunch.

Blair Primis chatted with our intern leads about effective team management prior to their volunteers beginning. 

Interact Studio taught our intern leads how to properly communicate with others in a professional manner and how to ask from the heart.

Levine Children’s Hospital showed our intern leads around Seacrest Studios, the oncology floor and ISF MIBG suite, and the Rare & Solid Tumor Program Lab. Our leads were also able to hear from Dr. Pope about supportive medicine for pediatric cancer. 

Ella B Candles showed our intern leads around the Hive which is where they learned about our partnership with Ella B and received help with their candle creation challenge.

OneBlood chatted with our intern leads and volunteers about their mission, the ISF partnership, and why giving blood is crucial for cancer patients, which all led up to our June 28th blood drive where they brought in 42 blood donors!

Ronald McDonald House of Greater Charlotte informed our intern leads and volunteers about what they do, how we partner together, and why wish list items are a significant help for the families and kids that stay at the house. After collecting and purchasing items, the interns then dropped the items off for RMH to distribute to families.

Each week we were blown away by these interns with the amount of money they raised, the awareness they were spreading, and just how passionate they were. This group were truly Change Makers. The teams faced a friendly competition that was pretty tight throughout the whole program. 

We are so excited to announce our overall winner of our 2023 Summer Intern Program is team In it to End it lead by Halle McKellar & Amelia Leahy! Both Halle and Amelia are returning interns and came prepared to win. Throughout the whole program, they were upbeat, passionate, and determined to succeed. In total, their team raised $35,788! After an amazing summer, Amelia described her and Halle’s experience with ISF …

This summer, I learned so much about working as a team. Halle and I have made such sweet friends out of the leads this year and it was hands down one of my favorite parts. I think I speak for both of us when saying that fundraising multiple summers in a row is hard work, but we both learned how to elevate our ‘why’ and continue to bring more awareness to pediatric cancer.”

Coming in second place is Kasen Mehta and his team The Purple Army at $24,403. Kasen described his experience with ISF …

“This summer was so amazing being able to raise money for an amazing organization for an important cause. The impact that ISF has on both fundraising for pediatric cancer research and treatment options at Levine Children’s Hospital is incredible and it has made an incredible impact on my life to be associated with ISF. It was so amazing to learn more about how a non-profit is run and what goes on behind the scenes.” 

We are so proud of all of our teams and all the hard work they and their volunteers have put into raising money and awareness this summer for kids fighting rare cancers. Here is what each of our leads had to say about their experience:

The Persevering Pack led by Ellie Chai & Conner Whittington | $10,913

“This summer has been a profound learning experience for me. Witnessing the power of a united team, unwavering dedication, and the impact we can create has been incredibly inspiring. I have discovered the true strength of empathy and community support, and I am grateful to have been a part of something so meaningful.” – Conner

“Throughout the summer, I have witnessed firsthand the transformative effect our organization has on the lives of those we serve. Seeing the positive change and hope we bring to individuals and families has left a lasting impression on me. I am deeply moved by the resilience of the human spirit and motivated to continue contributing to our cause.” – Ellie

Hope Raisers led by Emma Landry | $9,137

“I’m incredibly grateful for the ISF Summer Internship program because of its ability to educate and impact young individuals as they take their new knowledge and skills back to their colleges.”

Dream Chasers led by Evan Bishop | $7,251

“I had such a great summer with ISF. It means so much to me to work for such a special organization doing work dear to my heart. I hope to stay involved with ISF and the team!”

The Cure Crew led by Angie Pulsinelli | $6,970

“This summer was a great opportunity for me to learn and grow. I had the pleasure of connecting with fellow interns as as well as learning more about the non-profit world and how important it is!”

Fearless Fighters led by Sarah Eastridge | $6,770

“My experience this summer was shaped by multiple things. One of which were the many different activities we were presented with, whether it be improving our leadership skills or touring Levine Children’s’ Hospital, I was able to gain some really important insight into how to successfully run not only a business but also a non-profit. Additionally, I was surrounded by eight other incredible people who ended up making my experience very entertaining while also teaching me different things along the way.” 

As we wrap up our 2023 Summer Intern Program sponsored by Viva Chicken, we want to thank all of our leads, volunteers, community leaders, and donors for participating and supporting this group of Change Makers! We are already looking forward to summer of 2024!

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