Economic Development News

Successful Summer for Jeff City START
Published: Monday, September 9, 2019
By: Missy Bonnot

It has been another successful summer for the Jeff City START program.  This program along with many other events in Jefferson City took a hit with the tornado and flooding that occurred this summer.  START Committee members were nimble and were forced to find alternative locations for the program due to many of the secured venues being affected either by the tornado or the flood.  But despite all the logistics, the program was a great success!

Approximately 70 interns registered for the kick-off event, JC-101.  The interns were educated on various aspects of living in Jefferson City and showcased all of the perks of our beautiful community.  This event also provided the opportunity to network with established local business professionals within the interns’ fields of study and with the chamber’s Young Professionals (YP) group during their monthly luncheon. This month’s YP luncheon guest speaker was John Moseley, Athletic Director and Head Coach for Men’s Basketball at Lincoln University. If you haven’t heard Coach Moseley speak, you should!  He is funny and insightful and a huge asset to our community.

Three “Lunch and Learns” were also hosted for the interns this summer to focus on areas of professional development.  The first event was “Lunch with Professionals.” Interns were provided a unique opportunity to have lunch and converse with business leaders in the Jefferson City community and at the same time showcasing The LINC, which is another great asset to our community.

The second “Lunch & Learn” was a session “Finance for the Future”. Zac Schoene, Financial Advisor for the Wallstreet Group presented on the topic of “Investing: The Importance of Starting Early in your career.” The presentation consisted of some helpful hints that can be applied to everyday life upon graduation which can help you achieve short, mid and long-term goals. 

The third and final “Lunch & Learn” was Office in Real Life (Office IRL) and focused on transitioning from student to professional or classroom to boardroom. Amber Hall, Human Resources Manager with DeLong’s Inc. and Ken Hussey, Director of Leadership and Civic Engagement at Missouri State Alliance of YMCA’s and Third Ward City Councilman, spoke about the expectations of and necessity for appropriate decorum in the workplace. What to do to make yourself stand out and become a valuable part of the organization, as well as expectations your employer may have as far as conduct and etiquette.

One of the components of START is an academy-style program. Involvement in the START Academy provided the interns with participation points. If enough points were earned, interns obtained a certificate of completion, signifying that they are now better prepared for entrance into the workforce.  25 students received the certification and a commencement was held on July 24th to honor them.  This class had the largest number of graduates to date! This certificate can be added to their resume to signify not only their achievement but their interest and investment in the community and professional development.

“This is the 9th year for this program and it continues to grow and improve every year. The Academy program really helped to engage and involve this great group of interns throughout the summer,” said Jacob Robinett, Chairman of the Jeff City START program. “This is an important program for Jefferson City as we work to attract young talent to our area, and we are grateful for the continued support of our local businesses.”  

Thank you to all our speakers and congratulations to all our interns. A HUGE thank you to our START Committee!  This group volunteered MANY hours and we are looking forward to our 10-year anniversary in 2020 and are already looking for ways to enhance the program.

Good luck and congratulations to all the interns and hopefully we will see you back in Jefferson City after college graduation!

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