The Summer Interns of 2019


As summer comes to an end, so does our time with our four summer interns. It has been a pleasure to have each of them around and we are so thankful for their time and hard work these past few months. But before we say goodbye, we wanted to take some time to check in and see what they did during and what they thought of their internship.

Let’s start with Dan Sweeney. When asked to share a fun fact, Dan responds, “I’ve read all the Expanded Universe Star Wars books.” He has been attending Summit for a year and a half. He was tasked to endeavor in the journey of sorting and cataloging all the games and activities used by Summit Students. And he was successful! He created a master list of games that the Students team will use to plan Surge and Edge this year. 

While learning all about how Summit works throughout the week, Dan says that he was surprised to sample every part of the process. He says that everyone’s kindness and trust is what stood out most to him. Moving forward, he asks for prayer as he finds his next step after this internship comes to a close.

Danesca Baez worked with community engagement on serving locally in the Foster Care System. She did some administrative work, reference checks, organized background checks, and facilitated emails and phone calls regarding Care Communities. She was also a part of organizing the Backpack Drive, Surge in the City, and Care Community orientations and launches. And on top of all of this helpful work, she created care packages for children.

While Danesca was a champion of administration for local service and Care Communities, this time was not without its share of challenges. Navigating technical issues on the multiple new websites involved in setting up Care Communities proved difficult. But, she says, “There were days that we were all frustrated, but we came together and talked about what wasn’t working and what we could do to help improve the process all while learning the system. Communication was a major key to help us overcome.” Communication was a big part of Danesca’s time in her internship—not just to overcome challenges but also to connect in meaningful Christ-centered relationships. “We took the time to really listen to each other and hear beautiful stories about why we are all serving for the same mission in mind,” she says. Moving forward, she asks for prayer as she looks for a long-term and full-time job.

Next, we have Miguel Gelabert! He says, “I’m usually far from what people first expect of me.” He’s been attending Summit since last October. He worked with the facilities department, who keep everything ship-shape around each of our campuses. He used his skills to help paint, repair, and construct anything that needed attention around the buildings. And when a job turned into a challenge, he overcame it with “coffee with extra shots of espresso.”

Miguel says that he learned “being balanced while multitasking in an occasionally stressful environment is made easy with the right company.” He also says that the openness and family-focus stood out to him during his time here. Moving forward, he asks for prayer for guidance and continued grace.

And finally, we come to Taran Haecherl, who worked with global ministry and traveled with the Ethiopia team this summer. Taran has been attending here for around six years. She is also a kindergarten teacher and has an eleven year old brother going into middle school this year. She helped the global teams traveling this summer prepare for their time in-country with supplies, itineraries, and other essentials. She also reviewed and revised country and cultural resources for the teams and reassessed the re-entry process to better accommodate the teams upon their return to the U.S. A challenge she found was understanding the dynamics of each global team. Since she had previously only worked with Children’s HopeChest, she had to learn about the differences in the ways our other global partnership organizations set and accomplish goals. However, she says, “With the help of Summit staff and previous global team members, I was able to discuss these differences to better understand the organizations as a whole to better serve the teams.”

Taran says that she was surprised to learn about the immense amount of work that goes into making church happen each week. She saw how each department had to work closely together. “Something that stood out time during my time at Summit was the overwhelming support that the Summit staff members have for each other and how they consistently cheer each other on and want to help each other in any way they can,” she says. Moving forward, she asks for prayer for the upcoming school year as she strives to be “a vessel for Christ with my students and their families, as well as the school staff and community.”

We also asked them to sum up why they applied for the internship in five(ish) words. Here you can see that for each of them, it all boils down to a posture of serving and following God’s direction for their lives.

Dan: “To see what God had in store.”
Danesca: “To serve with a purpose.”
Miguel: “Curious if I could be of assistance.”
Taran: “To better trust God's plan for my life.”

And if you need some new or different places to eat for lunch, the interns have you covered with these recommendations!

Dan: Pig Floyd’s
Danesca: Sea Thai
Miguel: Lechonera
Taran: Olive Garden

Thank you for everything, interns!



If you have any questions about summer internships at Summit or are curious about applying next year, email Amy Kaufholz at