On July 12, 2018 U-M School of Information presented the Dr. Veronica Wilkerson-Johnson Diversity Internship Award to Desiree McLain. Desiree McLain (MSI ’18) earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan with a focus on Women’s Studies, AfroAmerican and African Studies, then pursued a master’s degree from the U-M School of Public Health, where she completed a Health Informatics Certificate. Her internship at Atlantic Impact allowed Desiree the opportunity to work with Detroit high school students and to introduce them to innovative career opportunities that they may not have otherwise known existed.
I am so very thankful to Veronica for her special gift! With her assistance, I was able to work at an exciting internship that provides Detroit high school students with life-changing study abroad and entrepreneurship experiences. Atlantic Impact is a Detroit-based nonprofit that uses field trips to expose youth to innovative career opportunities. In my internship there, I assisted them in securing their website so that their mission could reach a broader audience, and strategizing ways to go paperless with their documentation. This allows them to capture important metrics and quickly tell their story to their funders. This results in them securing funding and broadening their reach, increasing the number of students that that impact.
-Desiree McLain, MSI 2018
Supporting students through internships is essential to the school’s success. Donors like Veronica provide students with these distinctive opportunities and the students are grateful for her support.
Veronica Wilkerson Johnson is Director of the University of Michigan Lansing Service Center, and Associate Director of Outreach, in the Office of the Vice President for Government Relations. She is also an Associate Adjunct Professor at the Lansing Community College. Veronica received her Masters degree from the University of Michigan School of Information and doctorate in Educational Leadership from Ferris State University.
Veronica supports the School of Information through her internship award for UMSI students who might not otherwise be able to afford to accept career-building internship opportunities in major urban areas. Veronica says that every step of the way throughout her wonderful and varied career, her School of Information degree has aided and guided her. She is delighted that she is now able to extend a helping hand to the next generation of students, so that they can benefit from experiential learning in real world settings.