Students benefit from summer internship program

While many might have enjoyed a summer “get-away” at the end of the 2013 school year, Cindy Hill, Fran Casner, and colleagues in the school district’s Facilities Department planned real-world, first job experiences for Career and Technical Education (CTE) summer interns. As in past years, the 2013 Summer Internship Program proved to be a great experience for 17 St Lucie Public Schools students. The program is a partnership between Facilities/Maintenance Department, CTE, and the Workforce Solutions/Hinkles and McCoy group, who create paid, real-world summer jobs for the students.  Team members from the Maintenance Department plan and host a golf tournament each Fall to raise the funds to pay the students. It is an amazing undertaking for the employees of Facilities/Maintenance to complete each year.  Participants in 2013 included Charles Barnes and Josie Osne, Amanda Frederick, Fort Pierce Westwood; Jameel Jackson, Dontrial Durden, Margaret (Lindsey) Matt, Marvella Mundo, Omar Guerrero, Torrence McQueen, Terrance McQueen, Whitney Smith, and Celeste Riley, Fort Pierce Central; Fre’ Sharia Freeman and Dale Dealle, Treasure Coast High School, Diego Garcia and Adia Vernette, Lincoln Park Academy. Each student completed training at Workforce Solutions/Hinkles and McCoy, completed six-week internships, and earned a pay check, the first ever for some. The students were assigned a single work location, learning and supporting the clerical, custodial and administrative staff in various departments and sites.  Appreciation goes to all of the district employees who supported the interns at all school athletic fields, Samuel Gaines Academy, security department, St. Lucie West Centennial High School, Village Green environmental Studies school, publications department, Media Services, Human Resources, West Gate K8, the CTE, food services, Weatherbee Elementary, and Fort Pierce Magnet School of the Arts. In 2013, Cindy Hill and the Facilities and Maintenance Department were recognized by the State of Florida as one of St. Lucie County Schools’ Business Partners of the Year for their work with the internship program. In addition to the paid internships, the Facilities/Maintenance Department awarded five summer interns with scholarships totaling $3,000 funded by the golf tournament, which will be awarded this Spring to Diego Garcia, Terrance McQueen and Torrance McQueen from Fort Pierce Central, Amanda Frederick from Fort Pierce Westwood, and Adia Vernett from Lincoln Park Academy. Pictured is scholarship recipient, intern program participant and Fort Pierce Central High School senior class president Terrance McQueen.