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This story was first published on NewsOne.com. It’s been edited for clarity and flow.
As many people know, you can’t say enough about how important talent from HBCUs is. Companies and organizations from all over the country continue to come to these schools to find the smartest and most talented young Black students.
This now includes groups like the Local Initiatives Support Corporation that work in the Community Development field. The organization just started a new internship program for students at HBCUs to help close the gap in opportunities for students of color. The program gives students mentorship and experience in community development, which gives them a leg up when they enter the workforce.
National HBCU Talent Development program
The National HBCU Talent Development program of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation will put 40 students to work as part-time interns with the Local Initiatives Support Corporation and other community development financial institutions over the next two years.
Interns will help with things like marketing, finances, and getting involved in the community. They will also take part in leadership and national networking events.
Local Initiatives Support Corporation Internship
It is paid for by the Citi Foundation and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation. It is meant to fix the fact that White students are much more likely to get paid internships than Black students, who are more likely to get unpaid internships.
The internship with the Local Initiatives Support Corporation pays $25 per hour and up to $15,000 for the academic year.
Visit the link below to learn more about the LISC’s National HBCU Internship Program or to apply for the Spring 2023 Semester (PDF).
“Talent is everywhere but opportunity is not. This program is a part of our work to address systemic racial barriers that keep young people from gaining the experience and the connections that they need to compete for good jobs.Denise Scott, Local Initiatives Support Corporation President
We know a lot of folks come out of school having earned a degree and are still kind of stuck in terms of their ability to advance a career.”
Community Development Financial Institutions
Community development financial institutions are one of the most important ways for communities to get the money and services they need. They also find sources of capital and make sure that the capital fits with the community’s vision. They give the community the power to be a part of this investment.
Community development financial institutions do things like run programs to improve housing, build up the workforce, help small businesses get money, and build schools in the community.
“We see it as a win-win for us because the community development industry specifically has a dearth of talent, and we have concerns about the future of community development looking for young leaders with all kinds of different skill sets to step into this industry.Denise Scott, Local Initiatives Support Corporation President
There’s so many points of entry and opportunities for growth, and many young folks in school wouldn’t necessarily know about community development without some more intentional introduction.”
Opportunities in the Community Development Sector
One of the most important industries that young Black students should work in is community development. No one knows more about the problems and needs of the communities that need help than the people who are most affected by them.
“These young folks may not understand how valuable their perspectives are. They connect to many of the communities that we are working in. Some of them are born and raised in these communities or just that they have a perspective about equity that is refreshing.Denise Scott, Local Initiatives Support Corporation President
So they are coming to the table with a voice about what their expectations are for the future all of which we should be building into how we think about community development. It’s a somewhat missing voice.”
In a time when different people and different ways of thinking can make a big difference in people’s lives, this initiative could really open a door to change the most-needy communities by giving the most-needy students opportunities.
“Their really voices matter in a lot of ways,” said Scott. “We’ll all learn something from their lived experience.”
About the Local Initiatives Support Corporation
LISC, one of America’s leading community development organizations, builds strong, resilient communities. To prosper, we tackle structural inequities in health, income, and opportunity and promote racial equality alongside residents and partners.
LISC has spent $26.7 billion to build 463,000 affordable houses and apartments, 78.5 million square feet of retail, cultural, and educational space, and tens of thousands of jobs and financial improvements since 1979.
Source: Donovan Dooley, NewsOne