If you were lucky enough to have tiger parents like me, then you grew up with expectations that you’ll become a doctor or engineer. Certainly, the idea of working in local government did not cross your mind.
I started to wonder about a career in local government after attending North Carolina’s City and County Management Conference in February. Unlike the state level, local government follows less mandates and have more creativity to solve problems. Because they live in the community, local officials also tend to have a better understanding of the needs of the community they serve. Generally, they receive more love than state officials.
My summer internship in the Town of Hillsborough Finance Department serves as my crash course to local government work in North Carolina. What is it really like?
After one-week, I can share this: The finance department has one of the most meticulous, dedicated, and hardworking teams I’ve seen. They manage all aspects of the Town’s finances. The team comprises of ten individuals—Daphna, Sarah, Keri, Pam, Linda, Veronica, Philip, Tanya, Tyrone, and Dewey—all whom I look forward to knowing better.
As part of this Fine Team, I am conducting an analysis of all department purchases to identify vendor receipts exceeding $1,000. With this information, the Town can negotiate discounted, bulk prices to save residents money. Additionally, I am writing the Town’s first investment and debt policy. Looks like Professor Szypszak’s lesson about North Carolina General Statutes is already in good use.