Maps and trips: UNC intern helps Alliance this semester

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Emily Pinkston, right, is interning with Sarah Sanford, our NC & VA coordinator for the spring of 2020.

Emily Pinkston, a senior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, is interning for the spring 2020 semester with Sarah Sanford, our North Carolina and Virginia Greenway Coordinator. An English and geography major, Pinkston is creating maps of focus areas along the Greenway in Virginia and North Carolina, writing a trip itinerary for the Triangle region of Raleigh-Durham, and writing content to help land funding in those two states.

Sanford knew that Pinkston’s unique skill set — combining knowledge of mapping platforms, data, and land use planning with creative writing and copy editing — would be of great help in Sanford’s work to complete the more than 1,000 miles of Greenway in her region.

“It wasn't that long ago that I was in school trying to figure out what kind of career I wanted to pursue,” Sanford says. “Internships give students the opportunity to ‘try on’ different types of jobs and organizations. I hope that by interning with us, Emily can get a better sense of the day-to-day work in this field. Interns are a great resource for nonprofits like ours, so I hope to be a resource as well by offering some career mentorship.”

Pinkston grew up in Atlanta and knew of UNC because her mother is an alumna. She has spent her summers at a camp in western North Carolina as a camper, counselor, and now manager as well as whitewater kayaking leader. She is leaning toward jobs in urban planning and environmental policy.

“I’ve kept a long list on my phone of things I’m interested in, and the East Coast Greenway was on there,” she says of contacting the Alliance for an internship. “I think I learned about it in a city planning course my freshman year.”


Read more of our February 2020 On the Greenway newsletter

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