About The Program’s Objectives
The Internship Program is a one-year paid Internship designed to increase the staff diversity within the Affordable Housing and Community Development field, and assist in meeting the diverse needs of the communities served throughout the rural West, including its emerging areas. This includes recruiting, training and retaining ethnically diverse students who may not otherwise know about the field. We specifically target underrepresented People of Color, who come from low-income rural backgrounds and reflect rural West’s diverse cultural and linguistic demographics. We give high priority to students entering their last academic year at four-year universities so that upon graduating from college, they may be able to be employed in entry-level professional positions in the field.
How The Internship Works
There are three main entities that make up the program: the Intern, CCRH, and the Host Agency. CCRH is a nonprofit organization that serves as the Program Administrator and coordinator of the program (we are not a public/government agency). CCRH sponsors the program and coordinates all trainings and supplemental program activities. The Host Agency is the location where each Intern carries out his/her day-to-day work. Each year, an average of twelve interns participate working and learning at one of the following three types of agencies: nonprofit affordable housing developer, housing authority or community development financial institution. Internsare selected via a competitive application process from across each state, and placed with a host agency for one year, beginning work in the summer (full-time) and continuing through the spring (part-time). The intern works closely with a supervisor and follows an Intern Work Plan that provides a well-rounded intern experience in the field of nonprofit affordable housing and community development. Interns and host agencies sign agreements with CCRH to ensure understanding of the program terms and policies, and to ensure an optimal experience for the Intern and the Host Agency. Selected interns are placed at host agencies located within driving distance to the university in which they attend.
In general, during the course of the year, the Intern will be actively involved in one of the following nonprofit housing and community development tracks:
Learn hands-on what it takes to create affordable healthy living communities, and specifically learn the intricacies of developing and rehabilitating single family homes or multifamily housing complexes from concept inception to construction completion for low-income and ethnically diverse communities following a real estate development process.
Learn hands-on the operations of affordable rental housing developments owned by nonprofit housing developers and housing authorities. Learn the financial, physical, regulatory and administrative services needed to support and sustain built multifamily affordable rental communities.
Learn the lending process undertaken by a community development financial institution to finance affordable housing projects, community clinics, and other community development related projects.
In addition, interns can be exposed to different leadership styles via CEO and Executive Director shadowing experiences; and are able to further develop their leadership skills through the program’s supplemental activities described below.
Program Activities And Other Opportunities
The Intern’s Program year will include a variety of pre-professional and personal skills development opportunities. Interns also get to know their other peer group members and program alumni through various activities and develop strong long-lasting relationships because of the work and activities that occur over the year. Some of these opportunities include:
Interns begin the program working at their host agencies and then shortly thereafter attend an intensive one-week training where professionals from the industry teach various affordable housing and community development topics. The intense week-long training also provides personal development tools (such as communication and negotiation techniques) that Interns can use in their professional and personal lives. The Institute activities helps Interns to get to know each other on a personal level and forge bonding relationships with one another, so that they feel comfortable communicating and confiding via email/social media/telephone once they return home to various parts of the West. The Summer Institute occurs in July at the University of California, Davis.
California Interns can attend and participate in CCRH’s renowned Annual Rural Housing Summit, while Washington State and Oregon Interns have the opportunity to attend and participate in their respective statewide Annual Housing Conference. These events usually occur between September-October.
In January Interns take a weekend to participate in a skills development/retreat where they reflect on their intern experience and gain additional community development tools.
Interns are regularly informed of community development events and news via our Intern email communications initiated by CCRH’s Program Director, and may be invited to attend one statewide or regional housing conference, depending on where the Intern is placed. Some Host Agencies sponsor their respective Intern to other non-CCRH trainings, such as the NeighborWorks America National Training Institute, National Rural Housing Conference, etc. (depends on Host Agency and CCRH partners).
Interns culminate the program with the presentation of a housing development project they have worked on during the year where they must convince a mock City Council that their development project is feasible and an asset to the community.
Successful Intern graduates participate in a special graduation ceremony typically in April preceding the annual Housing California Conference in Sacramento. The graduation is attended by Intern families, CCRH intern alumni, nonprofit leaders and practitioners from across each state.
CCRH staff aggressively promotes the employment of graduating interns. Staff actively connects graduating interns with nonprofits who have jobs available via direct dialogues with its nonprofit network. On a longer-term basis, CCRH keeps a data base of graduating Interns on file and regularly forwards job announcements and resources to the group. CCRH staff often serves as references for Intern graduates.
Internship Program Term And Pay
The term of the program is for one year. Interns are expected to start no later than June and the pay range is from $14.00-$16.00 per hour, depending on geographic location. For external CCRH program sponsored trainings, CCRH pays for all intern lodging and meals per CCRH guidelines.
Who Should Apply
Priority is given to full-time students the current academic year enrolled full-time and the following entire academic year or at the very least the fall term. Preference is given to those entering their last year of school, want to pursue a career in the nonprofit housing and community development field, have a solid understanding of basic math calculations, have good writing skills, have solid Excel (spreadsheet) skills, are from rural, farm-worker, American Indian Reservations/Rancherias, immigrant or low-income backgrounds, and demonstrate a commitment to improve the quality of life of low-income and rural communities. The program encourages applications from various majors. Access to a vehicle is strongly preferred. See more under each geographic location. Students of Color, bilingual, bicultural students are strongly encouraged to apply. A strong commitment to affordable housing and social justice is a must!