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City Launches Program for College Students Interested in Careers in Local Government, Nonprofits and Public Service

City Launches Program for College Students Interested in Careers in Local Government, Nonprofits and Public Service


The City of Long Beach, in collaboration with local educational institutions, has initiated the Long Beach Public Service Corps program, a groundbreaking effort to bridge the gap between academic learning and practical public service experience. This initiative, in partnership with California State University, Long Beach; California State University, Dominguez Hills; and Long Beach City College, aims to provide college students and recent graduates with the opportunity to explore and develop their careers in local government, nonprofit management, and public service.

Mayor Rex Richardson expressed enthusiasm for the program, highlighting its potential to inspire students and recent graduates to pursue careers in public service, thus strengthening the local talent pool and fostering the next generation of civic leaders. This sentiment was echoed by leaders from the participating educational institutions. Dr. Jane Close Conoley, President of California State University, Long Beach, emphasized the program’s role in offering local career opportunities to students, while Dr. Thomas Parham of California State University, Dominguez Hills, and Dr. Mike Muñoz of Long Beach City College lauded the program for providing invaluable work experience and enhancing student competitiveness in the workforce.

The program is open to college seniors residing in Long Beach who attend any of the three partner institutions. Its inaugural cohort, starting in February 2024, will include 50 students interning across various City departments. Applications are open until November 30, 2023, encouraging eligible students to seize this opportunity for a hands-on learning experience. Interested students can apply here

Apart from the paid fellowship, the program offers a comprehensive professional development curriculum. Workshops will cover essential public service topics like budgeting, community engagement, crisis management, sustainability, ethics, and policy. Additionally, participants will engage in project-based learning activities, notably contributing to the planning of the City’s Youth Festival in 2024 and Youth Week in 2025.

This initiative is a collaborative effort involving the City’s Department of Economic Development’s Pacific Gateway Workforce Innovation Network, Department of Human Resources, and various legislative offices. Pacific Gateway will manage the program, providing case management, payroll coordination, and supportive services like transportation assistance, clothing vouchers, rental assistance, and utility payment assistance. These provisions aim to ensure that all participants have the necessary support to succeed in the program.

Moreover, the program aligns with Mayor Richardson’s commitment to establishing a Public Service Pathways Program. The City Council, recognizing the importance of this initiative, approved a one-time allocation of $300,000 in the Fiscal Year 2024 budget for the Economic Development Department’s Workforce Development Bureau to support the design and implementation of the Long Beach Public Service Corps.

This program represents a significant step towards fostering economic inclusion and opening up opportunities for young residents of Long Beach. By bridging the gap between academic institutions and real-world public service, the Long Beach Public Service Corps is poised to enrich the educational experience of its participants, contribute positively to the local community, and pave the way for future public service professionals.


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