The Chamber’s 2011 Summer internship program is winding down and the results of surveys of participants have been extremely positive.

“What a great program!” says Clay Peres, Business Manager at Ski Pajarito. “Our intern finished his last day with us on Saturday and he did a great job.” The sentiment was similar from all businesses and organizations that responded to the survey.

The program was offered to all Chamber members this spring as a product of the collaboration of the Chamber with the New Options New Mexico project of the Kellogg Foundation and Innovate+Educate New Mexico.

Eleven interns were placed with members for the summer under the program which offered employers a pre-screened candidate pool and reimbursement of a portion of each interns wages.

Forty-five young people ages 16-24 applied for the program and twenty-seven of those completed the ACT Work Keys Career Readiness Certification exams this Spring and earned National Career Readiness Certificates.

One hundred percent of the applicants found that the program was either “extremely” or “very” effective in helping them to prepare for future employment opportunities. One commented, “It’s a great way to find a job in a town where finding a job isn’t always the easiest. It’d be an even better program if it wasn’t just for the summer, but year-round.”

The program was one of several pilot projects under the Kellogg initiative that took place around the State. “No decisions are yet in place about whether this pilot will be able to be continued, but we are going to try hard to make it positive through collaborations with the sponsors.”