If you dropped by our office this summer or stopped at our table at Cascade Bicycle Club’s STP packet pick up, chances are you met our summer intern Zoe Kasperzyk.
Zoe, who grew up in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood biking and walking to her schools, came to Washington Bikes via New York. She is an Urban Planning/Sociology and Environmental Studies student at Bard College in the Hudson Valley, and an active member and leader of their bicycle co-op.
“During the cold and snowy winter at Bard, I began thinking about returning to Seattle for a summer internship. As I researched organizations to reach out to, it became more and more apparent that my main interest was in bicycle advocacy, planning, and encouragement,” she explained. “When I contacted Washington Bikes, I was thrilled to hear about all of the projects that I could become involved with. I was also fortunate to be awarded a grant for my work at WA Bikes through Bard’s Center for Civic Engagement.”
Each day is a little different and full of new things to learn, according to Zoe. Her projects have varied between conducting a survey with bike map distributors around the state; to creating a bicycle advocacy toolkit to help community advocates understand how to influence projects, plans and processes; and organizing the projects funded by Safe Routes to School for the past 10 years.
Zoe intends to make use of her newly acquired bicycle advocacy knowledge when she returns to New York this fall.
“I want to help Bard College attain the League of American Bicyclists’ Bicycle-Friendly University status and I want to help work on a bicycle map for the Mid-Hudson Valley area to encourage more ridership. I also hope the bike co-op will reach out more to the schools and surrounding communities through bicycle education programs,” asserted Zoe.
Zoe added that she will intern with Kingston (NY) Department of Planning and hopes that her work will include a bicycle infrastructure component.
We are grateful to have Zoe as a member of our team this summer. Her work will benefit bike advocates in all corners of our state and help us we continue to make Washington a better place for biking.
As a Community Action Award intern, Zoe has been blogging about her summer experience at Washington Bikes. You can read her entries on the Bard College Center for Civic Engagement blog.