The overarching goal of this internship is to advance the knowledge of aspiring individuals during their final years of high school so that they can successfully prepare themselves for the future.
The Brains Behind Creative Solutions
Lead Website DesignerKunal is a senior at Neuqua Valley High School. He is a member of the Speech Team and Math Honors Society. He enjoys working with technology and hopes to pursue a career in the field.
Outreach DirectorKavin is a senior at Neuqua Valley High School. He enjoys learning more about how the world works and plans to study physics in college. He is a part of various clubs, such as Science Olympiad, and is also a member of the Marching Band.
Director of Information RetentionRohan is a senior at Neuqua Valley High School who is looking to pursue a career in engineering or data analytics. He is a member of Neuqua Valley’s Youth and Government program and is also involved with their Tri-M Music Honors Society. In his free time, he enjoys playing baseball, playing the trombone, and spending time with friends.
Event CoordinatorCalvin is a senior at Neuqua Valley High School. He is interested in the finance and accounting field. Currently, he is an aspiring Eagle Scout and is heavily involved in Youth and Government and DECA. Some of his hobbies include snowboarding and camping.
Media ManagerBen is a senior at Neuqua Valley Highschool and is interested in pursuing a career in marketing or biomedical engineering. He spends his time working, lifting, and running practices for the Neuqua Valley ultimate frisbee team.
Director of FinanceVishnu is a senior at Neuqua Valley High School. In the future, he is interested in pursuing a career in finance or economics, and is involved in Youth and Government and Finance Club at school. In his free time, Vishnu enjoys playing the saxophone, watching soccer and spending time outdoors
Hello! My name is Calvin See and I am a member of the Fine Finish Internship. Our first meeting consisted of introductions, discussions of our plans for the future, and some insightful presentations from the CEO, Mr. Hewawasam. As we introduced ourselves, one of the most important parts of our project was to include the interests of everyone in our entire group. From medicine and physics to business and media, we had a wide range of topics which we needed to satisfy in order for everyone to justify their inclusion in the internship. After these discussions, we moved onto a presentation from Mr. Hewawasam. He brought up many engaging points including the difference between complex and complicated which was the driving force behind his talk. This led into conversations about real life topics relating from the song, United Breaks Guitars, and COVID cases in India. Although I was in the hospital during this meeting, I still had a good time. It was really interesting to hear everything Mr. Hewawasam had to say and I am excited to get to work to hopefully do something impactful. From my perspective, I was not really sure what to expect during this meeting. At this point, I was in the hospital for a few days and I was just glad to be able to see my friends again during the meeting. The sheer fact that we are able to have an online meeting was great and I thoroughly enjoyed everything that occurred. I’m looking forward to hopefully make some larger steps at progression the project in future meetings.
My name is Kunal Daftari, and I am the internship’s lead website designer. During our second meeting, I utilized an algorithm in order to figure out which topic would be the best to pursue. We compiled our methodology in a powerpoint for easy-viewing. Essentially, we thought of five different categories (fun, interest-fitting, time, uniqueness, and viability) for our five different topics (AI, composting, desalination, plantar fasciitis, and prosthetics). Using google forms, we were able to rank the topics from 5 points (the best) to 1 point (the worst). After calculating the averages, prosthetics achieved the best score of 4.6/5.0. After some deliberation, we finalized our decision. This discussion brought up two points: which category is the most important and how can we successfully do prosthetics. Despite differing opinions, we came to the conclusion that “fun” was the most important category for the simple reason of “if you don’t want to do something, why do it in the first place.” Lastly, it was important to truly understand what life is like while missing a limb because none of us have experienced that.
Our third meeting was prominently focused on forming a general schedule to follow for the upcoming months. But before diving into schedule making, we had a discussion with Mr. Hewawasam about our priorities and intentions. Why were we here? What should we focus on improving during our time at the internship? Firstly, it was reemphasized that we need to focus on being better people and citizens. Another imperative facet to the success of the project was our trust in each other. To ensure the project went as smoothly as possible, we had to form teams of teams in which everyone was collaborative and trusting. While the specific teams were not delegated at this moment, this principle of teams of teams became a core tenet in future meetings. We also needed to brainstorm some “teams” that we could potentially have when we did eventually split into them. Some possible examples that we brainstormed for these teams were a social media department (i.e. YouTube channel, Instagram marketing, etc.), a research department, or an external communications department. We also briefly discussed the necessity for member expansion. While it would be beneficial to have more hands on deck, the aforementioned trust that improves effectiveness would be lacking with brand new interns. Finally, since we had decided on the project category, we decided to set a goal to formulate a proposal by the next meeting.
– Rohan Mendes (Director of Information Retention)
Hi there, my name is Gavin Hewawasam, a member of the FineFinish 2021 Internship. This critical fourth meeting was spent with Dr. Indika Edirisinghe, a renowned researcher and specialist in the field of nutritional science. With his experience working with hundreds of papers as a peer-reviewer, along with conducting research on many different studies, his expertise and insight was greatly beneficial to our cause. The first thing that he elaborated on was hypothesis-driven research, one of the possible approaches to our research. Using this method, we would create a conclusion based on available data and evidence, along with predictable outcomes. This also meant that we would have to establish a hypothesis regarding our research in order to structure our project. Next, Dr. Edirisinghe explained the necessity of innovation, and how we need to be innovative in our approach to the internship. If something already exists, we need to be able to develop something new, or find a new approach to an existing problem.
This ultimately segued to our main point of contention during the meeting, literature review. Literature review concerns going through established publications and papers in order to gain information about a certain topic and see legitimized patterns and results. The main point is to gather information that is already available, in order to be as prepared as possible. In order to be successful in literature review, the focus should be on the gaps in each publication, to see where an experiment may have gone wrong or to find something that an experiment failed to consider. This allows for our own project and experiments to be inclusive of everything that needs to be accounted for, so that we do not fall into the same pits that the other experiments did. Dr. Edirisinghe also mentioned that it is important to keep all data and notes regarding literature review together and in the same place, so that it is easier to notice patterns and trends in multiple papers.
Dr. Edirisinghe followed by telling us a story about a nobel prize winner who found the key to his success through thinking outside the box and modifying his procedure when conducting his experiments. He stated that this reveals the importance of keeping notes on everything that we do, so that we can go back and analyze, in order to find and make these changes. Along with this, Dr. Edirisinghe reminded us to have thick skin and be able to handle criticism, so that our research and eventual final project is defensible and legitimate to everyone. Overall, Dr. Indika Edirisinghe’s advice gave us a lot of great information to use in our advancement into literature review, and also provided us with good life lessons to keep in mind in future endeavors.
We had our first opportunity to meet in person for our fifth meeting, which proved to be both fun and productive. Our meeting began with a discussion to finalize the direction of the internship, a decision between composting and prosthetics. We discussed important factors such as the tangibility of each decision, individual interests, and the value we could gain during the next couple of months. After important deliberation, we came to the conclusion that prosthetics serves us more effectively, a significant decision that will impact the trajectory of the internship.
Next, we spent some time evaluating each of our goals. It is critical to have an awareness of our goals if we hope to make them a reality. Everybody spoke, and we heard ideas such as gaining knowledge, accomplishing a hard task, standing out in the community, and improving as a citizen. Mr. Hewawasam also emphasized his want for us to uphold an attention to details throughout the coming months. With our goals outlined and shared, we found a new sense of drive and commitment to our internship.
Mr. Hewawasam then led a conversation on the difference between knowledge and wisdom, where everybody had a chance to share their understanding of the two terms. We came to the conclusion that knowledge and wisdom are two aspects of intelligence, but they differ greatly. Knowledge is academically inclined and information based. You either know it or you do not, and it lacks flexibility. Wisdom, however, relies on experience. It is about applying experiences and the ability to critically think. Wisdom cannot be gained through being told. It can be convenient to understand the relationship between knowledge and wisdom through the metaphor of a lock. Knowledge is similar to a key. It excels at solving problems it is designed for, such as keys excel at unlocking their respective locks. When faced with an unknown problem, however, wisdom tends to be much more useful. Almost like a lock-pick, wisdom can be used to overcome any obstacle, making it critical that one develops the skill to learn from experiences.
Our conversation then shifted gears a bit. Mr. Hewawasam challenged us to think about the future. Today, major companies are employing AI in a variety of ways, but what lies after AI? After a playful discussion about humans and robots coexisting and The Terminator, we heard ideas about e-waste and the cyclical nature of the world. Predicting the future of society is a difficult task, but conversations such as these are necessary for cultivating our ability to think critically and creatively.
Finally, we talked about details. We acknowledged the need for a means to share our process for internships to come, which could best be accomplished through social media such as YouTube. Then, the topic of our schedule arose. Our goal is to complete the majority of our internship by the start of our senior year, August 20th, and we developed a schedule that would be most conducive to this objective. To finish our meeting, we finalized each individual’s responsibilities to maximize our teamwork and efficiency.
– Micah Hrubec
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