WORKFORCE & LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM

Through our community-based internships and apprenticeships, as well as work with youth entrepreneurs in E-fairs and other workshops, OC assists our partners to offer work experience, skill-building, and career pathways. With nearly 700 unique internships hosted since our program began, and $18,000 invested in youth business in 2023 alone. Through the lens of the 12 Key Community Assets, OC’s goal is always to nurture opportunities for participants to stay in – or return to – their home communities and regions.

WHAT IS AN OGALLALA COMMONS INTERNSHIP?

Our Community Internships are a unique work experience and hometown career exploration program that takes place in your local community, or a regional institution or business. Our program is a partnership between Ogallala Commons and communities that create opportunities for high school students, college students, or adults in a continuing education program or career change. OC Community Internships provide experiences that illustrate both the key assets and the serious challenges present in rural areas. Interns receive an hourly stipend for their work, and internship lengths, though flexible, normally range from 8-10 weeks or a semester (125 to 240 total hours). These internships enable rural communities to constructively utilize the skills of their youth and adults, and to inspire home-grown talent to return in the future–to live, work, play and raise their families.

HOW DO I BECOME A COMMUNITY INTERN, APPRENTICE, OR A HOMECOMING COHORT LEARNER?

If you have any questions please contact Megan England via email. Megan will be happy to assist you or answer any questions you have regarding a Community Internship.

Because each internship will be different and needs to be tailored to the strengths and interests of the intern and to the needs and priorities of a community partner, OC and partners will collaborate to select the best candidate through applications, interviews and recommendations.

HOW DOES A COMMUNITY PARTNER CREATE AN INTERNSHIP OR APPRENTICESHIP?

OC Stories

Delissa Villa is a real estate investor who grew up in Tulia, TX, and owns Laridel Properties, LLC. She is a 3-time OC intern alum with a degree in International Marketing, currently working on the team at Keller Williams Realtors in Amarillo, TX.

Matthew James completed an OC Rural & Remote Apprenticeship in 2019, and now works remotely for Primitive (a Lubbock, TX-based software solutions company) from his hometown of Concordia, KS.

Megan England, another multi-OC internship alum, and is currently a Business and Career Choices teacher, media specialist, and EMT who recently returned from the city to her home county in rural Southeast Colorado. She also serves as an OC Intern Mentor.

Tiana Suazo, eager to find work experience and a career path that would deepen her talents and embody her vision, Tiana completed 2 internships and an apprenticeship in OC’s program. She is currently Executive Director of Red Willow Center, located at Taos Pueblo, NM.

Major Partners