The Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program has become a Dallas tradition, one new mayor Eric Johnson plans to continue.
Students representing 52 Dallas ISD, Richardson ISD, and public charter high schools, participated in eight-week, paid internships at some of Dallas’ top corporations, nonprofits, and legal firms.
Of approximately 2,400 students who applied for internships, 370 students got jobs at the more than 200 participating businesses and nonprofits.
One of those students, 16-year-old Olivia Bason, now a junior at Hillcrest High School, interned at Accenture, a business management consulting firm.
“Being able to fully experience aspects of corporate America at such a young age was at first overwhelming but soon became thrilling.” -Olivia Bason
“Being able to fully experience aspects of corporate America at such a young age was at first overwhelming but soon became thrilling,” Bason said. “The eight weeks I spent at Accenture was an opportunity I will forever be thankful for. I got to network, broaden my communication and leadership skills, as well as understanding how being proactive and paying attention to detail is really important in any occupation.”
Bason, who plans to attend a four-year university and major in communications or media studies, said that her parents’ roles in media inspired her potential career choice.
“Growing up as a child with parents who worked in media and radio, I was always fascinated with how small aspects of a job contribute drastically to the final product,” she said. “I even see myself applying for a full-time job at Accenture after college since I loved my brief time there.”
Accenture managing director Jorge Corral said that Bason “demonstrated strong leadership and communication skills” during her internship.
“We very much appreciated Olivia’s positive and energetic approach to work,” Corral said. “She asked questions to understand expectations, requirements, and timelines, and consistently went above and beyond the call of duty.”
The intern program began in 2008. For the past seven years, Bank of America has given $100,000 annually, allowing 280 interns to work at 100 nonprofits.
“As a Dallas native who grew up in West Dallas and Oak Cliff, I strongly believe that education and workforce development are crucial to help our city grow its economy and to improve the well-being of all Dallas residents,” said Johnson, who was elected mayor in June. “What pleases me most about the Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program is that it prepares our young people to become successful members of our city’s workforce by teaching them essential skills, so they are career-ready before they have even finished high school.”