Tell us about your organization: We are a public library system that provides resources for learning, cultural enrichment and enjoyment. We serve a wide variety of patrons, including students and citizens across our community.
What has been your experience with the Birmingham Promise internship program?
Students work in entry-level positions. Some of our interns have been able to maintain their positions beyond their internship and stay to assist with summer programming and earn additional funds to save for college. Our team can share library knowledge about valuable databases and resources that will help interns academically in college.
What do you hope students receive from an internship with you?
Our hope is that the interns learn how to improve their customer service skills. Almost all careers have some aspect of customer service involved, so we think that it is an important skill to have. We also hope that they have developed their independent thought skills, as well as how to work on large-scale projects individually and with co-workers.
If other businesses are considering joining the internship program at Birmingham Promise, what advice would you offer them?
Any time you open your environment to new individuals, it is a chance for both you and that person to grow. You get fresh feedback and ideas when you allow someone else to experience the things that you have already grown accustomed to. It is also fulfilling to work with young people that are still discovering themselves and are on the verge of beginning a new phase in their lives. Their enthusiasm is infectious.