SAN FRANCISCO – Today, San Francisco Chief of Police Greg Suhr and sf.citi celebrated the completion of the 4th annual Future Graduates summer tech internship program, honoring students with stipends and certificates of achievement. The closing ceremony, hosted at the San Francisco Police Officers Association featured representatives from participating San Francisco based technology companies, SFPD Command staff, SFPD Youth and Community Engagement, the San Francisco Police Foundation, sf.citi spokesperson and forty-one SFUSD students enrolled in this year’s summer program.
“We are making investments in our young people to make sure they receive the best education and job experiences so that they obtain the skills and training needed to succeed in the 21st Century,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. “The San Francisco Police Foundation, in partnership with sf.citi through the Future Graduates program, is supporting my Youth Jobs+ initiative to give our next generation of leaders meaningful job opportunities this summer and beyond.”
A partnership between the San Francisco Police Foundation and San Francisco Citizens Initiative for Technology and Innovation (sf.citi), the Future Graduates program enhances youth access to 21st Century work experience, placing local high school students in paid summer internships at innovative, San Francisco based technology companies during the summer. For the fourth year running, forty-one San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) students ages 14 – 18 and representing all sixteen San Francisco public high schools were placed in paid summer internships at fifteen San Francisco based sf.citi member tech companies: Adroll, 32-7, Appallicious, AppFusions, Assurance Data, Bayes Impact, Black Girls Code, Elev8r, Getaround, if(we), Meadow, Mobiquity, NextRequest, RichRelevance, and Trulia.
“Honest, paid employment for young people is essential to their well-being,” said San Francisco Chief of Police Greg Suhr. “It enhances their self-esteem and keeps them on the right path to making good choices, with vision of bright futures ahead. Happiness lies in the knowledge that you are valued, and paid employment does just that. We want every child in San Francisco to be happy, healthy, and safe. A cornerstone of SFPD’s private sector jobs program, in partnership with SF Unified School District, sf.citi and local community leaders, Future Grads has provided our young people with the opportunity to show what they can do when simply given the chance. Thank you to everyone who helped make this year’s program happen and for sf.citi’s continued commitment, encouraging our City’s young people every step of the way.”
Gaining real-world job exposure, these students learn new skills in a productive environment. The SF Police Foundation facilitates student placement and manages the program during the summer, and sf.citi has again provided significant funding for paid student stipends and covering the costs of the program, while securing private sector internship host commitments. A component of Mayor Lee’s Summer Jobs+ Initiative, the program prepares students for future success, encourages them to graduate from high school, pursue fulfilling careers, and lead productive, healthy lives, while highlighting the innumerable possibilities of learning that lie ahead.
“Participating in the SF Future Grads Program as an employer has been a uniquely fulfilling experience.” Said Amy LeBold, Senior HR Business Partner at the SF-based tech company, AdRoll, who hosted nine Future Graduate interns. “We were amazed at how well the students integrated into the workplace and what they were able to teach us over these eight weeks. Their presence in the office added huge value both for the professional and personal learning across our Rollers. We are so grateful to have been part of the interns work/life experience this summer.”
Recruited from local high schools, students fill out an application and are matched to a company based on interests, skill levels, language ability and company need. A max twenty hours per student per week, the program begins early June with a tech skills orientation, culminating in a closing ceremony where students receive well earned, paid stipends for completion of internships. Not only do students see coaching on personal communication skills and perspectives on work setting expectations, they rotate through various roles in different departments, gaining experience on a variety of projects, tasked with analytics, social media, branding, product, content, marketing, QA, support, engineering, and other skill sets in high demand by tech employers. The scope of each internships is designed by each participating company.
“We designed this program with the success of young people in mind,” said Jeremy Wallenberg, Director at sf.citi. “Bringing together government, community and the private sector, we are proud to build on our partnership with Mayor Lee and Chief Suhr to provide young San Franciscans with access to meaningful work experiences and new skills that encourage them to graduate, pursue fulfilling careers, and lead productive, healthy lives. We can’t think of a more perfect coming together to ensure our local students feel valued through paid employment during the summer, which could not be possible without the continued leadership of Mayor Lee, and the genuine commitment of Chief Suhr to lift up young people in our City every day.”
The Future Graduates program has also been adopted by other municipalities as a model for public-private partnership, such as the New York City Department of Small Business Services Tech Internships program, and has been honored nationally by the White House Champions of Change program recognizing every day Americans who are making positive changes in their communities.
Future Graduates is a cornerstone program of the San Francisco Police Foundation, a non-profit organization formed by citizens in 2011 to aid San Francisco police officers in their service to community. Future Graduates prepares students for success, encouraging them to graduate high school, pursue fulfilling careers, and lead productive, healthy lives.
The San Francisco Citizens Initiative for Technology and Innovation (sf.citi) is a 501(c)6 advocacy organization committed to leveraging the power of the tech community around civic action in San Francisco. Launched in 2012, they have supported innovative policies, advocated for tech sector growth and worked collaboratively with government and communities to find new solutions to historic problems facing San Francisco.
For more information on the program please see these micro-videos from years past or visit sfciti.org.
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