High school internship program seeks partner businesses

By Michelle Price
UCBJ Managing Editor

COOKEVILLE – Putnam County Schools is taking a hands-on approach to helping build a better workforce in the Upper Cumberland with a new internship program.

The purpose of the internship program is to provide opportunities for students to gain practical experience through partnerships with area businesses.

Last year a local businessman approached the Highlands Economic Partnership and the Putnam County School System and expressed a desire to focus on non-college bound students. Together they developed a new paid internship program for vocational students. The paid internships will allow a student to work up to 20 hours per week at a pay of $10 per hour with the employer paying $5 and the private donor paying the other half.

Students available to participate in this program have successfully completed programs in auto mechanics, construction, information technologies, culinary arts, business, mechatronics, and transportation and logistics. Schools will work with employers to accommodate schedules, and students will receive school credit for any work done during regular school hours.

Employers interested in participating in the program will have the opportunity to interview students at a program job fair that will be held on Sept. 11 at the Leslie Town Centre. After the interviews are complete, employers will rank the students by best fit and the school officials will complete the matches.

Internships will last from September through May. Employers will be contacted weekly by school officials to ensure that the employers’ needs are being met. Students will be responsible for adherence to all policies, rules, regulations, and performance expectations as if they were full-time, regular employees.

Employers are also needed for an unpaid internship program for available students who have focused on college-prep courses.

For further information, contact Amy Profant, Academic Career Coach, at 526-9777, ext. 1428.

Michelle Price is the former managing editor of the Upper Cumberland Business Journal and can be reached via email. Send an email.

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