After a summer where I found myself lost in a wealth management internship, I Googled “ocean and yoga internships” as those happen to be two things dearest to my heart. I ultimately landed on Bodhi Surf + Yoga’s homepage. I was in awe that such a creative, alternative, environmentally-aware, and beautiful tourism company existed. I later learned the importance of ecotourism in a stunted and heated global climate. I was enticed, and knew that I wanted to be Bodhi’s next intern!
Finding the Bodhi Surf + Yoga internship program
I immediately applied, and was drawn in by the application which asked eye-opening questions such as:
- The biggest challenge I have had to overcome
- Why I want to protect the environment
- What volunteer work I had done.
This was a far cry from other applications that I had filled in over the past few years. I was already smiling, knowing that somewhere on the planet, there were people raising consciousness by means of their business. Fast forward to now, and I fully believe in a world where all business can be used to better humanity. I have attained a confidence in finding my way as a young entrepreneur, and I possess a never ending desire to protect this planet — all thanks to Bodhi and its people.
I had the one-of-a-kind opportunity to be a Bodhi intern at from May to August of 2018. It was during their off-season and then while they hosted a Global Leadership Adventures surf and service camp. I helped with a marketing campaign for next season while simultaneously dipping my feet in the water assisting in a service camp for teenagers.
Why I needed the Bodhi Surf + Yoga internship
In my second year at the “strictly-business” Babson College, I found myself a little confused. How I could possibly make use of this degree, when what I cared most deeply about was the ocean, yoga, wellness, fitness, women’s empowerment, and writing? Of course I knew that entrepreneurship was all about creating intersectionality between personal passions a need in the market. However, I did not think I was capable of bringing together what I considered to be such distant passions. Bodhi taught me so much about combining different themes, like nature and yoga, into a business to attract and empower a tribe that is conscious and ready to give back to the world.
Bodhi is a Certified B Corporation, a network which emphasizes that individuals and businesses cannot wait around for the government and nonprofits to fix society’s most pressing problems. Rather, the B Corp movement gives businesses a platform to harness their respective passions and energies to drive positive social and environmental impact. I think the philosophy I enjoy most about B Corps is that it is actionable. It states that we must not sit back and critique the issues that we believe most threaten our planet, rather that we become the change that we want to see in the world.
Freedom and independence
Not only did Bodhi introduce me to a new perspective on business, it also gave me the freedom and independence to gain skills in many new facets which I would never be able to do in a big business. I got to witness how important it is to invest in younger generations for the future by educating and permitting them to explore. The GLA students provided me with the opportunity to gain leadership and mentoring skills alongside mentors that were well-trained and experienced.
Also, Travis and Adrianne granted me sovereignty to research and develop a social media group (the Bodhi Tribe) that would foster customer engagement. This is something that I would never have been able to do in a large company. I got to work closely with Adrianne and Travis, both of whom I look up to as mentors now. The time spent with these entrepreneurs, environmentalists, and genuinely inspiring people provided me with a strong foundation to walk into the future feeling like I do not need to let my passions go to the wayside for the sake of a career.
A sneak peek into the average day as a Bodhi intern
I awaken just after the sun had risen alongside with my roommate (and future lifelong pal, Hannah), and head to the yoga platform to get a morning rush of adrenaline with Pilar. Pilar, a Bodhi co-owner yoga teacher, takes us in like children and help enliven our spirits with daily workouts. These leave us ready to take on the day feeling strong and fearless.
The campers get ready for their day of surf and service by eating a Tico breakfast with delicious coffee, gallo pinto, corn tortillas, scrambled eggs, and fresh fruit. As the campers head down to the beach, I stay behind and soak in the beautiful peaceful landscape of Bodhi, letting the air of rejuvenation that whispers through the plants seep into the blogs that I write. My writing is for an upcoming campaign where guests will be receiving different tips on how to minimize their carbon footprint, and thereby feel empowered to become stewards of the environment.
Service and surf
After I feel like my creative juices are stunted, I bike the hot streets of Bahia Ballena down to the beach. This town has me constantly surrendering to the state of peace it instills in my core. Parking my bike, I run straight towards the ocean’s edge, and enter a state of complete bliss as I go under the first wave. There is a certain kind of silence that wraps my entire being in awareness under the ocean. I watch and admire the campers all learning to surf the beautiful beach break and am in perpetual awe of the green, mountainous backdrop against the deep blue of the ocean.
Next, I help prepare for a service session at the local non-profit, Forjando Alas. Travis and I head there to help the GLA campers proctor games which simultaneously teach and engage the after school kids in the youth program. I learn something new and inspiring every day; today’s lesson is on sustainability. To end this beautiful day, Hannah and I sit at the bar of Carlito’s Restaurant across the street from Bodhi, and enjoy an ice cream sandwich while we share our laughs of the day.
Connections for life
I will forever be grateful for my time spent at Bodhi and in the lovely community of Bahia Ballena. As Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” This is so exemplified by Travis, Pilar, Adrianne and the whole team at Bodhi! I walk onwards with lifelong friends, role models, a deeper love for the environment, and an everlasting sense of hope in the future. The people I meet who are bathing in their own authenticity and passions are the fuel to my fire of being the creative change I want to see in this world.