Student interns work under the supervision of The Children's Trust staff.

The Children’s Trust

Summer Youth Internship Program Back in Full Force This Year

Students can get real-world job experience through paid internships

Parents often have a hard time keeping their kids busy, and out of trouble, during the summer months. Just keeping their kids engaged can be hard enough, but finding something productive for them to do can feel like hoping for a miracle. Having them get real-world experience for future jobs is not possible, is it? How about getting paid to do just that!

Though it might seem like a fantasy scenario, the Summer Youth Internship Program (SYIP) checks all of those boxes, and more. Miami-Dade County rising 10th through 12th graders can qualify for the program through their public schools. Have your children ask their teachers about the program and sign up before May 14.

Last year’s Summer Youth Internship Program (SYIP) was adjusted on the fly – like everything else – to adapt to the challenges of COVID-19. The program transitioned to a completely virtual format with thousands of South Florida students taking advantage and completing a 5-week internship at businesses and organizations across the county. This year, there will be virtual, hybrid and in-person internships available.

“These are students who will go to work, get real life experiences, and we will pay for them, we will open a bank account, they will come insured and they will get high school credit,” said James Haj, president and CEO of The Children’s Trust, which has sponsored the program for the past five years.

“The internship programs has helped create a sense of stewardship and independence amongst are youth,” said Lesdisney Rodrigues, program manager for Hope for Miami, which participates in the program. The skills and experience gained by interns is comprehensive. “Throughout this internship I learned how to manage my time and how to think quickly when a problem arose. The best thing I learned was public speaking,” she said.

For the companies that sponsor the interns, the advantages go beyond the altruistic. “Every year our interns have proven to be a true value to the company. Hiring interns brings fresh insights from the new generation work force,” said “Alex Funkhouser, CEO of SherlockTalent in North Miami Beach.

The program also gives students a leg up on future career opportunities. “Employees hire who they know, when you have openings available you tend to hire them. And we are a testament. The Trust has hired several employees from the Summer Youth Internship program,” Haj said. “For students, this is an opportunity to get a taste and a feel for the business sector. And to develop and fine tune your skills needed to be successful in life.”

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