This article is over 12 years old


Signature Program Links College Students With Nonprofits

It is an unforgettable experience. Area nonprofits take in college students to work as paid interns for the summer. The eight week program allows full time college students to gain hands-on experience in a wide range of community organizations. Pat Hernandez has more.


To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:

<iframe src="" style="height: 115px; width: 100%;"></iframe>

The ExxonMobil Community Summer Jobs Program is in its 13th year in Houston. 65 full time college students were selected from a field of over 16-hundred applicants from area nonprofit agencies. They each looked at potential interns’ skills, special talents, abilities and interests. Their salaries will be paid by grants provided by ExxonMobil.

Rich Kruger is president of ExxonMobil Production Company. He says he’s impressed with the interns’ energy, enthusiasm and hope that they represent and convey to Houston:

“To commit to internships and community service tells us right at the bat, at this young age that they recognize the value and see the importance of not only receiving, but giving back, and that is what I think is really the highlight of a program like this.”

The interns will gain hands on experience in working with area nonprofit agencies from the Houston Zoo to the Hermann Park Conservancy. Each participating agency will receive a grant of about 27-hundred dollars for the intern’s salary. Carrie Moffitt is executive director of Volunteer Houston, the administrator of the eight week program.

“One of the things that we are charged to do, is to make sure that the volunteer jobs that they get for the summer in their internship, are really meaningful, and so most of these young people will be doing very significant jobs. They’ll be directing programs, helping to raise money, doing marketing for organizations, really some significant responsibilities.”

intern Ashley Guzman with Houston Zoo mentor SarahMelanie Pang of the University of Houston was cited for her contribution to the Houston Food Bank:

“After meeting so much of the Houston community whose lives are affected by the Houston Food Bank and its agency’s efforts, my desire to work in the future with a nonprofit organization is reaffirmed, and my standards for a career in the future were forever changed. I learned so much about people, life’s hardships and empathy all in one summer, and sure, a summer job is what I signed up for, but I truly believe that the experience I received was far beyond my expectations.”

Another intern, Ashley Guzman who went to Texas A&M, is happy to return to the Houston Zoo this summer:

“Just the learning, or teaching people how important conservation is, and just being with the animals and learning how wonderful and smart they are. The whole experience is just wonderful.”

ExxonMobil has contributed almost 2-million dollars in the Community Summer Jobs Program in Houston.

Subscribe to Today in Houston

Fill out the form below to subscribe our new daily editorial newsletter from the HPM Newsroom.

* required