Rocket Ships & Heat Pumps: a ReVision Energy Summer Internship

This blog post was written by our Summer Marketing Intern, Caroline Heyburn:

Caroline & her favorite heat pump

At a dinner conversation a few days ago, my grandparents asked how my summer internship with ReVision’s marketing team was going, and five minutes later my grandmother had to cut me off, saying that she was so glad I thought everyone should have a heat pump, but they really wanted to know more of my daily routine. It’s the last day of my ten-week internship, and I’ve tried to write this blog post so many times but cannot find the right words. I want to explain my gratitude for the teams I got to work with and how much I appreciate them welcoming me. I want to convince readers of the sincerity behind ReVision’s mission statement. I want to somehow wrap everything I’ve learned into 500 words to make sure I don’t forget what it feels like to work for something you believe in. The closest I’ve gotten to this message is my 5-minute heat pump manifesto.

I first became interested in interning at ReVision in 2018 during a high school project on the laws regulating community solar farms. I called the Portland office, and an employee-owner spent over an hour on the phone answering my questions. I think time is the greatest gift you can give someone, and Jen Hatch gave hers to me so graciously. Fast forward to 2022, the spring semester of my sophomore year at American University, and ReVision was at the top of my list for summer internships. I wanted to learn more about renewable energy, especially from a company that claimed to make a profit while not sacrificing the environment. I am an International Relations and Arabic major with a minor in Communication, so while marketing is not directly what I am hoping to do as a career, it has been a great opportunity to learn about this industry that I believe in and feels critical for the future of our planet.

Caroline answers solar questions at the Portland Sustainability Fair.

The truth is I don’t have a normal day-to-day routine. Every Tuesday we meet as an entire team, but the rest of the week is usually a series of intricately organized meetings, events, and projects. The part of my job that I’ve enjoyed the most is attending events. You may have met me under the blue and orange pop up tent. People are curious, sometimes skeptical, often excited, and these conversations have taught me more about the importance of renewable energy than I will ever learn in a classroom.

At one farmer’s market on a hot day, a little girl came up to ask for one of our Sunsquatch stickers. We started chatting, and she told me that she wanted to build a solar-powered rocket ship to clean up space trash. Of course we had to start drawing the blueprint, and when I asked her how she chose solar panels to be the energy source, she said a wind turbine wouldn’t fit on a spaceship.

This summer, I’ve learned that customer service goes far beyond terms on a contract and answering emails. At ReVision, customer service means stewardship of communities and the environment; it means being transparent and reliable; it means giving your time to all the people that you meet, especially the little girls building rocket ships.