by Katie Sipple, PR Intern
Layne Hagy, therapeutic recreation intern, can be seen around the ASK center engaging children in playtime and assisting at weekend arts classes. She is a recreational sports management major with a concentration in therapeutic recreation and a minor in psychology at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. A course in her curriculum last year required her to work at with children at two schools. One child had such an effect on her that she decided to follow her curiosity and learn more. That child had a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder. Layne wished to know more about autism, so she started looking for internships within that specific community. Luckily, an email popped up in her inbox that announced Autism Site Knoxville (ASK) was looking for qualified interns. From there, she says, everything fell into place like it was meant to be.
Layne has only been with ASK for about five weeks now, but she says she loves this opportunity because she never knows what will happen when she walks in for the day. She says she was skeptical of her ability to do the job at first, but she is grateful for the opportunity and encouragement from her professors and Veronica Cordell, the founder of ASK. She would like others to know that the experience could be intimidating, but they should not let any hesitancy get in the way of an opportunity that will change their lives.
Layne also likes the fact that she is getting to be a part of a true entrepreneurial experience since ASK is a new organization. She has been able to watch the process of growing an idea into a reality. This fact also makes the internship unique since it is a flexible and learning process. She says she and the other interns are laying the groundwork and standards for many interns to come.
On a more personal note, Layne is an out-of-state junior at UTK from Marietta, Georgia. She is 20 years old and dreaming of being a physical therapist for the Atlanta Braves. She chose to come to Knoxville to follow in the footsteps of her father. Upon graduation, Hagy plans to get married and study for her certification test to make her hard work and dedication pay off.