LEAP for Education is once again partnering with Gloucester High School to provide free six-week internship opportunities for students next summer.
Last year, fourteen participants worked with The Open Door Food Pantry, 1623 Studios, Beauport Hotel, Cape Ann Museum, Cape Ann YMCA, Gloucester Stage Company, Seaside Legal Solutions, and Second Glance Thrift Store for a minimum of 9 hours a week.
Interns will be either paid minimum wage by employers, or given a stipend by LEAP at the end of the summer. Work schedules will be flexible, and Gloucester High School students will receive school credit for their involvement.
Student Nichole Fernandes took part in the program, as a lifeguard for the YMCA. “By the end of the summer I bought a whole car and everything, said Fernandes. “I made 11 dollars an hour, minimum wage. A week I worked 40 hours, maybe more, sometimes 50.”
Summer internships can help students develop skills and build their resumes. Program Coordinator JoAnn Leavitt encourages students to apply. “Students will be learning two sets of skills,” said Leavitt. “They’ll be learning hard skills at their jobs that could be anything from working a cash register to customer service to CPR to serve safe, which is kitchen safety.”
“We will also be focusing on soft skills, which they will learn both at the job and in the once a week workshop; cooperation, teamwork, problem solving, critical thinking. These are things that employers in this day and age are looking for, just as much as some of those hard skills.”
In addition to work experience, summer interns will also participate in weekly classes at the GHS library that will include team building exercises and mentorship from local nonprofit and business leaders.
“Interview skills are also something will be focusing on,” said Leavitt. “Community people will come into the community to provide mentorship.”
Interns will build up resume writing and job interview skills, as well as learn about professionalism in the workplace. Guest mentors will also teach students about how to assess their skills and interests, how to navigate the job and college search, and how to handle college financial aid.
“It’s really valuable,” said Fernandes. “Take advantage of this huge opportunity. If you’re a person who wants to go to college and be educated it’s really an internship you want to get into.”
Visit LEAP’s website (www.leap4ed.org) for more information or contact JoAnn Leavitt, firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. Applications will open in January