Kang “Penny” Thao

Kang "Penny" Thao

2013 recipient of the Audrey J. Harris Summer Internship Award


Interned at the Department of Corrections, Division of Community Corrections

Majors: Political Science & Legal Studies with a Certificate in Criminal Justice

Goals: To help others and give back.

This summer I had the opportunity to intern at the Department of Corrections Division of Community Corrections Probation and Parole. This internship taught me a great deal about the Criminal Justice Field. I worked with Probation agents, helping them to manage their offender caseloads through office visits, home visits, and in documenting the offenders’ whereabouts, and actions while they served their time on supervision. I had the privilege of going to the jail to gather offenders’ statements and I also had the opportunity to attend a Revocation Hearing, that decided whether an offender’s probation privilege would be revoked. During the internship I also got to work with the different software tools like COMPAS and OATS, that help assist agents in managing their caseloads. Through these tools I helped to complete assessments and case plans for individual offenders. I also learned of the different services and treatment programs that are available for offenders in the reentry process. Overall I worked closely with offenders to help them have a successful reentry into society.

This internship required strong dedication and daily it challenged my ability to successfully manage my time. Being a full time mother of two, working part time and also taking summer courses, in addition to this internship, really challenged my ability to handle stress. I have learned so much from this experience not only about the Criminal Justice field but about myself and my capabilities. The knowledge I have gained from this internship has not only strengthened me but continued to fuel my passion towards helping others. I am honored to have been awarded the Audrey J. Harris Summer Internship Award. It has really encouraged me to stay persistent with my education and future goals. I look forward to taking what I have learned and using my newfound knowledge to improve the lives of others. May I continue to help others the way the Audrey J. Harris Award has helped me.