Jeff Lefebvre, Founder and President of PriSim Business Consulting, ignited some powerful sparks of creativity and learning when he and his firm stepped forward to fund our 2020 Summer Internship Program.

Jeff was so inspired by a talk given by one of our talented alumni that he became focused on disseminating the W2C message and mission to First-Generation students and families far beyond the community of Waukegan. With that goal in mind, he partnered with us for the 2020 summer internship program.

These summer internships for W2C college students are fundamental to their opportunity to advance into professional careers upon college graduation.

“Our students often lack the networks and connections necessary to win the coveted summer opportunities open to students from wealthier communities. This is our second annual paid internship program, and we are planning for it to become an on-going offering.”

The eight interns– recruited from among the ranks of our 51 college students—spent six weeks of their summer creating new tools to enhance and expand messaging to First-Generation students and families, encouraging them to pursue a four-year degree from a college or university.

The tools include a “Success Stories” video, featuring recent college graduates from OUR program, an expanded college-readiness texting service, targeted to parents of middle school and high school students in Waukegan, and the associated marketing plans promoting awareness and embrace of the new tools.

But beyond the assets created by the interns, the program enabled these college students to gain first-hand exposure to the professional world. Working side by side with W2C Staff and with marketing, consulting, and film professionals, the interns had the opportunity to both learn new skills and hone existing ones, all in a milieu of self-discovery and growth. These experiences are perhaps best expressed by Elie, a rising sophomore attending Denison University.

“This internship taught me the importance of accountability. To me, this means ensuring my best work is always created when wanting to pursue long-term change for future Waukegan families….I have learned to become a young professional myself through advocating for and expressing my own thoughts and ideas, while collaborating with others.”

And this sense of accomplishment and pride was echoed by Jeff Lefebvre as he took stock of the summer’s program.

“Through this process, I trust that they have learned that they can accomplish more than they thought was possible….they’ve learned that nothing can stop them when they fully apply their hearts and minds.”

Waukegan to College
410 Grand Avenue
Waukegan, IL 60085