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Internship reconnects Randolph student with her hometown

Kayla Morris '22 spent two months this summer interning with the city of Clinton, North Carolina, her hometown.

Kayla Morris ’22 spent two months this summer interning with the city of Clinton, North Carolina, her hometown.

Kayla Morris ’22 has spent the summer getting to know her North Carolina hometown again.

As an intern with the city of Clinton’s Planning and Development Department, she’s worked to promote the city’s downtown through the Clinton Main Street Program.

“The downtown has changed a lot since I left,” said Morris, a math major minoring in music. “When I started my internship, it was cool to see my city in a different light. I got to meet the business owners and see what they’re about. It made me excited to live here.”

Morris’s first order of business was asking if she could take over the Downtown Clinton Instagram account, which gained more than 100 new followers during the two months of her internship.

“My whole job was pretty much promoting the downtown businesses in our area and trying to drive more traffic through there, since a lot of people are staying in during COVID,” she said. “These businesses are hurting. I went out and took pictures in the businesses. A new boutique just opened last week, so I’ve had a couple photo shoots with them to help promote their clothing.”

Through her social media and promotional work, Morris wound up frequenting the Clinton dog park and quickly saw its potential to be another asset for the city. Her proposal to spruce up the park calls for the addition of equipment, made from recycled and repurposed materials, for the dogs to play on, as well as seating and memorial trees pet owners can dedicate to their dogs that have passed.

“I really wanted to make it unique to Clinton,” she said.

The proposal has been approved, but Morris’ internship ended last week, before any work actually began. While she won’t be involved in the day-to-day operations anymore, she’ll be keeping tabs on it while learning remotely this fall.

“At least,” she said, “I’ll be here to see it happen.”

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