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Plano Mayor John Muns congratulates Plano Mayor's Summer Internship Program teens at a drive-by celebratory parade last summer. Photo by James Edward

Registration opens Feb. 1 for the competitive Plano Mayor’s Summer Internship Program, a “learn-and-earn” program that places qualifying Plano sophomores and juniors at some of the area’s top corporations and nonprofits. Presented by founding sponsor Capital One, the program taps students from Plano’s award-winning and nationally recognized school district, connecting them with dozens of organizations, from national headquarters and government entities to small businesses, local charities and nonprofits.

The eight-week paid internship program – offering remote and on-site placements (or a combination of both) – runs June 6-July 29 (although some start dates are flexible). Students earn a minimum of $10 per hour working 20-40 hours per week. Only the first 400 applications will be considered, so students are encouraged to apply early.

Led by Plano Mayor John Muns, the program prepares the future workforce for a successful transition into college and their life-long careers. Since its inception in 2014, approximately 700 students have received summer internships, reaping invaluable benefits from being immersed in or exposed to a professional workplace.

With internships that rival those at the college level, students get to network with upper-level management, coordinate meetings and projects, learn how to work remotely, and gain in-the-field exposure to a wide array of careers, from automotive and aviation operations, to education, logistics,  marketing, medicine and more. This year, Mayor Muns has made it a priority to increase the number of AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) students in the program, as well as students who will be first-generation college students.

While COVID-19 is still a challenge, the Plano Mayor’s Summer Internship Program and its devoted business and nonprofit partners are prepared to safely offer summer placements, offering a variety of remote and on-site jobs with safety protocols in place.

Interested businesses may email vicki@vwaitgroup.com or sign up at planomayorsinterns.org by April 15 at 5 p.m. 

To qualify, students must complete an online application, which includes two short essays. Additionally, applicants must be a rising junior or senior at a Plano public high school or a rising junior or senior at Hebron High School and reside in the City of Plano; have a cumulative 3.0 GPA (minimum) and solid attendance record; be 16 years of age by June 13, 2022; be eligible to work in the United States; and be able to work the entire eight weeks of the internship from June 6-July 29 (or dates determined by the employer).

In addition, students must attend the in-depth Intern Prep virtual event on Saturday, March 19 – focusing on resume development, interviewing, business communication, professional dress and personal goal planning – to be eligible for the Job Fair on Friday, April 22, that typically attracts dozens of employers. Selected students will receive a formal job offer via email in May. If chosen, students will then complete two days of Intern Orientation and Enrichment training June 1-2 when business soft skills, networking, teambuilding and work-readiness topics will be addressed. Also this summer, a Community Service Day will be held, where interns come together and serve in their community through hands-on volunteering.

The program culminates with Mayor Muns hosting an end-of-summer luncheon to honor the interns, employers, partners and sponsors on Friday, July 22, at Plano Event Center.

In addition to presenting sponsor Capital One, Plano ISD is a major partner, and JPMorgan Chase is the Job Fair sponsor. (JP Morgan Chase also is underwriting 20 interns in the technology and healthcare industries and the nonprofit sector.) Other program sponsors are Atmos Energy, Bank of America, Boeing, City of Plano, FedEx Office, Granite Properties, Liberty Mutual, NTT DATA Services and Oncor. Companies are encouraged to sign up at planomayorsinterns.org, so that more students may be selected.

Deadline for businesses and nonprofits to sign up is April 15

Businesses and nonprofits of all sizes are encouraged to sign up and hire one or more interns. Businesses may also underwrite an intern to work at a nonprofit or government agency, or become a program sponsor. Companies pay a $500 program fee for each intern that covers training and enrichment activities, the Job Fair and onboarding and administrative costs.

Details and the online application are available at planomayorsinterns.org. For student-related questions, contact Mary Peltier at mary.peltier@vwaitgroup.com. Companies interested in signing up may contact Vicki Wait at vicki@vwaitgroup.com.

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