2020 Interns: Where Are They Now?

During the summer of 2020, the K12 Foothill Consortium launched their internship program.  Not even the virus could stop youth workforce development!  Our hosts and students seamlessly pivoted to virtual internships. So how did we do? The survey results are in from the inaugural class interns:

  • 100% reported their internship supervisor was helpful and supportive during their time at the organization.
  • 100% reported the organization valued their work and input. 
  • 100% reported the internship developed their skills in order to be ready for career/college.  
  • 100% would recommend this summer internship program to a friend. 
  • 75% of interns received a letter of recommendation from their internship supervisor.  
  • 75% reported their internship exposed them to a career path or industry they may pursue beyond graduation.
  • 33% reported being offered a job as a result of the internship!

Our current juniors and seniors enrolled in career technical programs across the consortium have completed the 2021 summer internship application. We hope to double participation rates this year and continue to have a positive impact on workforce development!

Speaking of impact, meet a few interns from the 2020 class as they weigh in on their experience. 

Lorilie Alvarez
Gladstone High School Medical Academy
Class of 2021

What are the key takeaways from your "summer of 2020" internship experience? 

My key takeaways would be learning how to put products on a website and use words to make them sound appealing, how to file bills into excel in an organized manner, and how to better work my laptop to create and store files.

Where are you now with your career goals/plans?

I am currently in my medical pathway class and planning on majoring in kinesiology.  I applied to La Verne, Cal State LA, Fullerton, and Cal Poly. 

Do you think internships are helpful to career awareness? Why?

Internships are helpful for career awareness because it can help distinguish what your interests are. I personally found out that I don't mind doing paperwork but I prefer not to, and product placement isn't really my forte.

Victoria Cardenas
Azusa High School
Class of 2021

What are the key takeaways from your "summer of 2020" internship experience? 

This past summer I have been fortunate enough to gain more insight in the workforce. I learned a lot of valuable information about creating a resume, interviewing with professionals, and being in the workplace and the amount of dedication it takes. It is very important to be consistent and organized and keep track of your deadlines. With this information I feel prepared enough to help my peers when finding a job. 

Where are you now with your career goals/plans?

I have been working part time for about six months. As of now I hope to go into a 4-year university after graduating high school. In college I plan on majoring in Child Development and becoming an elementary school teacher in the future. 

Do you think internships are helpful to career awareness? Why?

Internships are a valuable experience because you can become interested in working in a field you have never thought about. It is a great way to learn more about being a part of the workforce and what is expected of you. As you begin to learn more about the workforce you begin to learn about yourself at the same time. For example, the type of environment you would like to be in in the future and what is the best way for you to be organized.

Anthony Echeverria
Gladstone High School Medical Academy
Class of 2021

What are the key takeaways from your "summer of 2020" internship experience?

My time with 50/50 Leadership as a marketing intern was very enriching and I learned a few things from it.  Even though you might be in high school and lack experience, you are expected to keep up with the workload that the mentors give you, which I believe was a good thing.  I also learned that it’s great to speak up and ask your mentor any clarifying questions, otherwise you will be left behind.  Lastly, I learned that no matter what your personality type is, you will be brought out of your comfort zone by communicating with accomplished adults or other high school students, which is a great thing! 

Where are you now with your career goals/plans? 

I’m still planning to major in life science, go on the pre-med track, and I hope to attend medical school. However, with this internship, I’ve definitely thought about possibly double-majoring in STEM and in humanities such as English, because most of the work I did within the internship involved lots of writing which reinforced my love for writing again.

Do you think internships are helpful to career awareness? Why? 

Yes, I certainly do. Even if the internship is not related to your prospective college major, it’s definitely a great way to get exposed to an actual work environment and other field of work that you might become interested in later on. Despite being young, internships also instill many professional qualities that will be extremely helpful later on in college or in the workforce, whether it’s work ethic or teamwork skills. 

Manny Gimenez
Azusa High School
Class of 2021

What are the key takeaways from your "summer of 2020" internship experience? 

I gained a lot from my internship last summer with Peraton Deep Space Network. I went from knowing almost nothing about communicating with spacecraft to learning lots about transmitting and receiving information as well as learning a ton about electrical circuits and programming through a project I had the chance to work on. 

Where are you now with your career goals/plans?

My experience greatly impacted my future career plans. Prior to the internship I was set on studying to become a mechanical engineer, whereas now I’ve just applied to colleges with my first choice major being electrical engineering. 

Do you think internships are helpful to career awareness? Why?

I think internships are very important for career awareness as in my own experience with Peraton. I learned about a whole new world of engineering and technology which I now plan on pursuing as a career in the future. Overall, my involvement as an intern has had a hugely positive effect on my life and I will cherish all my time spent and experience gained.

If you would like to host an intern from the K12 Foothill Consortium this summer please reach out to Amy Foell, Workforce Development consultant for the San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership. afoell@sgvpartnership.org.

Antonio Luna
Duarte High School Business Entrepreneurship Academy
Class of 2021

What is the biggest struggle the internship helped you to overcome?

The struggles that I’ve overcome was confidence and patience. 50/50 Leadership helped me a lot and I will use it to my advantage. My key takeaways were patience and discipline to discover my career path. 

Where are you now with your career goals/plans? 

Right now, I am looking for a career in videography.  Last summer’s internship actually helped a lot. Internships are helpful because they give you an experience and they can help you overcome obstacles along the way.

Are you planning to apply for the 2021 Foothill Consortium Internship Program? 

I don’t really know yet because I want to focus on college and make it through successfully. My post-graduation plan is to attend Pasadena City College in the summer of 2021 and study videography.

Leticia Perez
Gladstone High School Medical Academy
Class of 2021

What are the key takeaways from your "summer of 2020" internship experience? 

The key takeaways from this entire experience were being able to work under pressure, work much better with my peers, and be able to communicate thoroughly with people of all ages in order to have better results. I was a research intern but because I was able to help out throughout the company, I also learned how to create surveys, edit videos and I was able to contact other companies and even talk to them. Overall, it allowed me to become a much more well-rounded individual.

Where are you now with your career goals/plans?

As of now, I am in the middle of college applications. I have submitted and am waiting for responses from the colleges that I applied to. My career goals have not changed but they have been much more clarified. I was lucky enough to have people beside me through the internship who questioned my career choices. This in turn allowed me to think more in-depth about the plan. Since I am aiming to become a neurosurgeon, it is essential for me to clarify my plans and goals which is what I was able to do over the summer. I am going to be focusing on a neuroscience major for my bachelor’s degree, focusing on doing well on the MCAT to get into a medical school of my choice, preferably USC, Johns Hopkins, or UCLA, and then going on to complete my surgical residency. But for now, I am in the beginning stages of these goals while I wait for college decisions. 

Do you think internships are helpful to career awareness? Why?

Absolutely! I can honestly say with one hundred percent confidence that during internships, you learn so much more about careers and even the career you are aiming for. For example, I knew that the neurosurgery field was competitive and very busy. My mentor arranged a meeting between a neuroradiologist and me.  In this meeting I learned that not many women become neurosurgeons since it is a male-dominated field. In addition, medical schools don’t just review grades and are interested in prospective students’ passions. 

It’s not just helpful for when you have a career in mind though. Internships expose students to various areas, making it the perfect way to find your interests. Seeing which areas interest you more can allow you to look into the career choices that are offered. I honestly believe every high school student should be able to experience an internship just so they can get more experience before they go to college.

San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership

4900 Rivergrade Road, Suite B130, Irwindale, CA 91706

Phone: (626) 856-3400    Fax: (626) 856-5115

Email: info@sgvpartnership.org

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