WILLIAMSBURG — Christopher Clemens, a senior at Walsingham Academy, was one of four students selected from the Hampton Roads area to participate in Bank of America’s “Student Leaders” Internship Program this summer.
The bank has been sponsoring Christopher for his summer internship at Williamsburg House of Mercy, where he has been working to improve food security and housing within the Williamsburg community. With hundreds of hours of previous volunteer experience, Christopher now has the opportunity to further his skills with Williamsburg House of Mercy.
Clemens has been a regular at Williamsburg House of Mercy as a volunteer since he was in elementary school. He has continued to volunteer with various events and food drives when available, including volunteering time to earn his Eagle Scout rank — the highest achievement in Boy Scouts.
“Mrs. [Shannon] Woloszynowski let me know about this internship that I could apply for,” Clemens said. “She said: ‘It’s worth applying for because you could be employed here at the House of Mercy if you get accepted for it.’ And sure enough, I got accepted. And it’s because of that, I’m able to work here at the House of Mercy.”
Clemens isn’t sure just what career path he would like to pursue, but currently, he is looking at a possible future in nonprofits in order to continue to help organizations like Williamsburg House of Mercy.
“I wrote in my Eagle essays that I would like to go to sleep every night knowing I made a positive difference to a person’s life,” Clemens said.
Clemens favorite part of the internship thus far has been getting to help with housing, as well as getting his entire Cross-Country team to volunteer and help out the organization that has become such a pivotal part of his life.
Recently, Clemens was allowed to participate in a leadership summit sponsored by Bank of America, where he was given the opportunity to talk to with people in leadership positions to help grow and develop his own leadership skills for the future.
“We got to talk to people from Capitol Hill, senators, civil rights activists,” Clemens explained. Topics of conversation included education in the prison system and other problems that plague the United States, and how the younger generation can strive to work on fixing these issues, he said.
Another part of the Leadership Program has Clemens working on a project for Bank of America to show what he has personally learned as a leader over the course of the summer. This project allows Clemens to talk about his experience through the program and how it has helped him grow and prepare for the future.
Clemens credits his success in achieving and participating in this opportunity not only to Bank of America, but also to Williamsburg House of Mercy, his family, his friends, teachers, and his church for guiding him along the path he needed in order to be where he is today.