On July 7th, BDS had a welcoming presentation for 10 high school summer internship students for the second summer in a row. Last year Commissioner Randy Leonard and Director Paul Scarlett approved the “School to Work” program which hired 5 students from Parkrose high school in addition to 5 students from Immigrant Refugee Community Organization (IRCO) for a 7 week summer internship with the bureau.
Last year's program was such a success, BDS extended the program this year to Jefferson High School Career Pathways Program. With the help of Jefferson’s Career Pathways Counselor Laura Bullinski, we were able to choose 5 interested and qualified students to work in Site Development, Administrative Services, Permitting Services, Information Technology, Combination Inspections, Sign/Electrical Inspections, Neighborhood Inspections and Customer Services.
In addition, the City of Portland continues to partner with IRCO by hiring students for summer internships throughout the bureaus. However, last year was the first time the BDS Customer Service team joined the IRCO students and the chosen high school students together. BDS worked with IRCO’s Career Counselor Jasmine Samples who provided us with 5 interested and qualified students as well.
The students will have an adventurous internship which will include field trips, various work assignments, outreach events, inspector ride-alongs and much more. “The goal of the program is to reach out to youth from diverse backgrounds, Portland Public Schools and various community organizations, with the hopes of providing a positive work experience and open their eyes to the services and employment opportunities the City of Portland has to offer”, says Outreach Program Coordinator Tiffani Penson.
Besides the exciting and new students filling our bureau, the staff that participates in training and mentoring of the students is very serious and dedicated in making sure the students learn all they can and have a very positive work experience. On behalf of the Customer Service team, we are very grateful for the staff’s participation, which contributes to the continued success of the program.
For more information, please contact Outreach Program Coordinator Tiffani Penson @ (503) 823-1109 or firstname.lastname@example.org