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Up Close with CAP: Michelle Gehman, Intern

The Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County (CAP) is comprised of many programs and individuals working to help low income families move toward self-sufficiency.

We’re working on showcasing and  highlighting various individuals, programs and the hard work that is done on a daily basis. It’s time to get ‘Up Close with CAP’!

Meet Michelle Gehman, Intern

Tell us a little bit about your role!

My role as the Communications Intern with the Coalition to Combat Poverty is to assist with the communication efforts through our social media and website. It’s been a fun process auditing our digital communication efforts and figuring out fun and strategic ways to engage with our audience.

The Coalition to Combat Poverty engages the community in order to increase the local understanding of poverty and undergo a problem solving process to make Lancaster City a better place for all. Examining how the accessibility of basic needs affects the growing number of people experiencing poverty.

With your unique major, what career did you have in mind?

My major is Communications and Theater with a focus in Public Relations and a minor in Entrepreneurship. My long term career goal is to own my own bed and breakfast in Lancaster County. My short term career goal is to work for a faith based organization helping them with event planning, their social media, or creative writing.

Throughout my 3 and a half years at Millersville University I have found that writing is really my passion and what motivates me. I love blog writing, research writing, and multiple types of media writing. Another short term goal of mine relating to my passion for writing is to do freelance writing. I would love to do many different types of writing for different organizations and individuals. 

What made you intern at CAP?

I went to an internship fair at Millersville University and wasn’t sure what I was looking for. I ran into the CAP table and was talking to the current intern there. While she was explaining the different aspects of the internship, I commented that it sounded a lot like the show Parks and Recreation. This alone got me excited to apply.

I had applied and interviewed with a few other places, but CAP stood out to me due to their unique presence and servant like attitude. The instant I had an interview I felt like I could really do well in this position and that CAP would give me the space to learn and grow.

What was your experience like at CAP and what have you learned? 

The people are passionate. Many of the people I met where part of multiple groups and gave up so much of their time to attend various meetings and events. My experience interning at CAP really pushed me to find go after a career that I am truly passionate and excited about.

I have also learned how to push myself out of my comfort zone. I learned how to do new and different things that I wasn’t necessarily taught in college. This made me more confident about my skills and ability to figure things out. 

What would you tell other individuals who are unsure of what they want to do or considering in interning?

Definitely do an internship. I was so nervous and unsure of how to begin the process of finding an internship, but now that I’m on the other side of that, I am really grateful that I did the work to make it happen.

Another thing I would say to someone who is unsure of what they want to do is, don’t be afraid to say yes to opportunities. Just because you don’t think something is lining up exactly the way you had imagined it does not mean that your making a mistake or that you’ll never get to where you want to end up. You have to start somewhere. And maybe you’ll end up somewhere different than you expected, but you’ll never find that place if you don’t say yes to opportunities in front of you.

Of all the CAP values, which one resonates with you the most and why?

The CAP value that resonates with me the most is Collaboration. This one especially resonates with me because during my internship I feel like I have seen first hand many different forms of collaboration and have grown to really appreciate and even admire it. Collaboration sounds like an obvious thing that needs to happen for a team/organization to succeed but it is not always easy to do. I admire how well the people I worked with at CAP accomplished collaboration with each other. 

What do you love about Lancaster?

Lancaster has so much history and diversity as well as so many amazing, generous, and kind people who live in Lancaster. Lancaster City is also such a cute hipster city with a beautiful countryside surrounding it, what’s not to love about that?!

What do you love to do for fun?

Does school work count as “fun”? Other than that I really enjoy doing things outside like hiking and kayaking. I also love baking, hosting parties for friends, and D.I.Y projects!


If you’re interested in volunteering or interning at the Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County, please click here. 


About the Community Action Partnership

The Community Action Partnership is Lancaster County’s largest anti-poverty organization, helping low income families move toward self-sufficiency. CAP’s service profile interrupts inter-generational poverty with programs that support families and individuals at every age and place in life, in the areas of education and child development, health and nutrition, household stability and safety and empowerment. For more information, visit

About the Coalition to Combat Poverty

The Lancaster Coalition to Combat Poverty is a collective-impact community effort that is focused on cutting poverty in half in the City of Lancaster by 2032. The Coalition was formed in early 2017 as a result of the 14 months of research and community meetings conducted by the Mayor’s Commission to Combat Poverty. The structure of the Coalition was determined by best practices, the priorities identified by the Commission, and multiple efforts not to reinvent or compete with existing groups addressing key issues. Through intentional partnerships between local non-profit organizations, businesses, government institutions, and Lancaster residents, the Coalition focuses on four key action areas that impact poverty: workforce, housing, education, and community. For more information, visit: