Thursday October 29, 2015
Imagine working at City Hall with top officials to help improve Burlington, using your ideas to implement a recycling program for local businesses, all at age fifteen. That is what Aida Arms, a sophomore at South Burlington High School (SBHS), spent her summer doing at the Community and Economic Development Offices (CEDO) in Burlington. CEDO’s mission is to engage the community to build a vibrant, bright city. They also connect citizens with one another and improve the quality of life throughout all of Burlington.
As an intern in CEDO’s sustainability division, Arms worked with city officials and other interns to create a plastic recycling program that would be used by Burlington businesses. One idea they explored was charging a fee for improper disposal of plastic bags and other single-use items. The plan spawned more ideas to fund a program that would encourage proper disposal of recyclables around the city, as well as increase the use of reusable bags.
Arms was also one of the organizers of the 25th anniversary celebration of the Americans with Disabilities Act at North Beach in Burlington. The event reflected on what the city has done for the disabled and its plans moving forward.
Arms recommends the intern program at CEDO to anyone who wants to learn about local government. She says she gained a deeper understanding and a greater appreciation for the people dedicated to improving Burlington. Working with city officials helped her learn about the process needed to keep a city going. It was a memorable experience, leaving Arms, CEDO members, and other interns feeling satisfied, knowing they were able to make Burlington an even better place to be.
SOURCE: Kailei Eustis, SBHS CDC Correspondent