Meet the Y: Interns Nehaa and Nick

This fall, the TownLake Y is thrilled to welcome Nehaa Dambala and Nick Thornton as interns in our Community Engagement department this fall. Nehaa and Nick have already been invaluable contributors across many departments. Nehaa has been interviewing members and staff about the “Y stories” — what brought them to the Y and the ways the community makes an impact in their lives — and assisting in our Hangtime morning program for preschoolers. Nick has been supporting pickleball, pick-up basketball, youth soccer, and the Welcome Center, as well as writing Y stories too. We asked each of them to share about themselves.

Nehaa Dambala: “I am a second-year Chemistry major at the University of Texas at Austin, with additional focuses on Business Foundations and Forensic Science. I was born and raised in Denton, Texas, a small town north of Dallas, where I lived with my parents and sister. My main career goal is to become a licensed obstetrician-gynecologist (OB/GYN), and hopefully one day found and operate a nonprofit women’s health clinic in Texas. Ultimately, I’d also like to get involved in healthcare-related public policy making, either on a local or state government level. I am excited beyond measure to be joining the team here at the Townlake YMCA - the environment is so friendly and welcoming, and it’s evident how dedicated each staff member is to the overall purpose of the Y. The strong network of support that the YMCA provides within the community, as well as its mission of inclusiveness, are what compelled me to apply, and I have not been disappointed. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to contribute to such an organization like the Y.”

Nick Thornton: “I am Nicholas Thornton and I am finishing my undergraduate studies majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a concentration in Health and Wellness for Clinical Populations from Texas State University. (Go, Bobcats!) I am originally from Dallas but moved to Pflugerville a little over a year ago. I am recently married and my lovely wife and I are approaching our 6-month mark! For the past few weeks at the Y, I have been working my way around the building to get to know the wonderful members and staff. I have also had the opportunity to play some pick-up basketball, learn the sport of pickleball, and burn lots of calories doing group fitness. My experience so far has been nothing short of amazing as everyone has been so welcoming and has made this place feel like a second home. It’s really easy to plug yourself into a community when everyone strives to support one another as you all do here. As the year progresses, I hope to help make this community stronger by simply helping my peers in any way possible.”

Thank you so much, Nehaa and Nick! Your hard work and positive energy are making great contributions for our staff and members. You embody the Y Voice: genuine, hopeful, nurturing, welcoming, and determined.


Erin Walter
All opinions expressed here are those of their authors and/or contributors and not of their employer. Any questions or concerns regarding the content found here may be sent to

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