Bishop Sullivan Center Internship Gives Students a Chance to Learn and Serve

Monday, October 28, 2019
Student and a client in an office

Each summer, students get a chance to serve for the summer as part of the Bishop Sullivan Center’s internship program, many learning lessons that last well after summer turns to fall.


Rockhurst seniors Abby Seipel and Aideen McEnaney were two of a number of Rockhurst students who received summer internship positions through the Bishop Sullivan Center, spending part of their summer break helping members of the Kansas City area in need.


Each year, the center places volunteers and interns with various nonprofit organizations in the Kansas City area that work within the center’s values of food, aid, and jobs. In addition to serving the community in those ways, the center strives to build relationships between the fortunate and the less fortunate and create a mutual understanding between the two, something echoed in the experiences of the summer interns.


Seipel learned about the center after seeing information in the campus ministry newsletter. After applying and interviewing, Seipel was appointed a re-entry specialist at Journey to a New Life, an organization that assists those reentering society following incarceration. As a re-entry specialist, Seipel provided emotional support for clients, connected clients with other social services, assisted in transporting donations, and other projects around the organization. Seipel’s experience with Journey to a New Life in Kansas City affected how she viewed the entire world.


“I learned so much from their [the clients] stories and experiences,” Seipel said. “Sharing those intimate, vulnerable moments with clients was incredibly impactful and truly changed the way I look at our society and world.”


McEnaney worked as a program coordinator for youth services at Alphapointe, an organization that works with those of all ages who have visual impairments. McEnaney worked with older children at summer camps to develop their leadership skills. McEnaney worked closely with the campers throughout the summer and said the experience strengthened her faith.


“The experience brought me closer to God because it has instilled a hope in me in seeing the staff around me that work so hard to give these wonderful kids a fun camp experience, as well as first-time jobs, the tools to develop leadership skills, and a program to transition to college living,” McEnaney said. “Their courage, kindness, trust and love brought me so much joy, as well as passion, to continue to serve others in the future.”