Edinburgh World Heritage - Internship 2013-4 - Õnne Reinup


Internship 2013-4 - Õnne Reinup

As a graduate with career interests in heritage protection and management, I jumped at an opportunity to gain real life experience at EWH. During my internship I was tasked with two projects: researching the history of street lighting in the West End of Edinburgh, and managing social media communications on EWH Facebook page.

My main project was to compile an extensive research report about historical street lighting in the West End. To most people, historical street lighting seems like one of those awkward subjects that only dusty old historians deal with. Perhaps it is true (and I am just one of them), but after hours of digging in archives, reading amusing newspaper articles about mischievous lamplighters, and looking at old photos and maps of Edinburgh, the subject became very exciting to me! History of public lighting is not just about counting street lamps or looking at beautiful design features – it is also a history of law and order, history of policing, and history of technology and great inventions. I was very fortunate to be able to utilise research skills I had gained during my studies for a project that will benefit Edinburgh greatly.

The Facebook project required me to learn a whole new set of skills, as social media communications on a professional level was something I had not dealt with in the past. After much research I up-dated the web-page, started developing content for daily posts, and initiated co-operation with individuals and organisations for the website. I really enjoyed challenging my creativity to make EWH noticed on this highly competitive social media site. Slowly, but steadily the following of EWH on Facebook started and has remained increasing.

Throughout the autumn I was also able to take quite a few other opportunities. I was very exited to accompany team members to meetings and diverse site visits ranging from the halls of City Chambers to scaffolding of conservation projects. Additionally, I became involved in the Friends of Canongate Kirkyard group and hope that this ongoing project brings more interesting challenges to my life.

I am grateful for the trust EWH has placed in me throughout my time with the team, as this enabled me to display my ability to use my own initiative and plan the workload whilst managing two very different projects. I appreciate that I was not spoon fed as this gave me the opportunity to prove my worth, as well as to build up my confidence and develop necessary skills much quicker. I was thrown in at the deep end, but with help and a lot of hard work I managed to pull through with great results.

Read a copy of Õnne's report - Historical Street Lighting in the Western New Town of Edinburgh (PDF | 4MB)

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