Southeast Student Writes County Advertising Regulations for Internship
College of Liberal Arts (Department of History)
Southeast Missouri State University historic preservation student Megan Atzert is gaining professional experience through an internship with the Franklin County Planning and Zoning Department in Franklin County, Missouri.
She assists in writing new outdoor advertising regulations for the county while getting an inside look at every aspect of the department.
“This will contribute to my success both academically and professionally, because even if I don’t end up working in a government office, I will work with various governmental agencies throughout my career. This internship is helping me understand the process in which things such as projects, regulations and zoning restrictions go through in order to benefit the public,” she said.
Megan feels her time at Southeast has contributed to her success.
“Going to Southeast has taught me many life lessons and has strengthened my work ethic and my ability to concentrate on the task at hand. I have learned to walk a mile in 30 degree weather, and I have learned that your school is what you make of it. I realize now what you do in life, whether you have a good or a bad experience, depends on your attitude,” she said.
Her favorite memory from Southeast is when she moved into her dormitory her freshman year. Eight people surrounded her as she stepped out of her car and helped her carry her many heavy bags to her room.
“I had realized how helpful everyone was going to be on this campus at that moment,” she said, adding that she enjoys meeting new people.
“You can learn anything you need to know just by having an open mind about people and their activities,” she said.
Megan has made new friends in Cape Girardeau while taking her dog for walks to the river.
“It’s a gorgeous and easy walk, and you encounter all kinds of people and things to do on your way there,” she said.
In her spare time, Megan volunteers with the Bollinger Mill State Historic Site, which she said has helped her learn about management and historic site interpretation. She also travels and plans to visit Greece and Italy in the future.
“They are famous for their self-sustaining culture, and I think the rest of the world needs to take a cue from them. I would love the opportunity to go there and absorb their knowledge,” she said.
After graduating, Megan plans to pursue her master’s degree in urban design and planning, preferably at Parsons the New School for Design or Georgia State University.
She encourages future Southeast students to meet new people and to look for new possibilities.
“You never know what is out there unless you explore your options,” she said. “I would not have gotten where I am without the assistance from the college. My advisor is the only reason that I have this wonderful internship, and the faculty here has helped me become a happier student by helping me identify my passion for urban design,” she said.