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Rural Communities in Oregon Invited to Apply for Community Internship Workshop

Nov 15, 2018

photos from past Oregon WORKS Workshops

(MCMINNVILLE, OR) -Based off of the successful McMinnville WORKS Internship Program, the McMinnville Economic Development Partnership (MEDP) created Oregon WORKS to help rural communities in Oregon launch industry-led internship programs in their own communities. Thanks to a generous grant from the Oregon Community Foundation and The Ford Family Foundation, MEDP has the opportunity to bring four workshops to rural communities in Oregon.

A rural community is defined as any city with a population of less than 35,000. The Oregon WORKS Workshop was designed to help communities create an industry-led internship program which can be used as a workforce strategy. The McMinnville WORKS Internship Program is designed to attract and grow talent through an industry-led internship program that benefits companies, interns, and the community. MEDP uses this same framework when teaching other cities how to create similar programs.

An Oregon WORKS Workshop is a seven-hour seminar through which business leaders and resource partners from one community come together to design an internship program that meets the needs of the local industries. The workshop will be taught by a skilled professional utilizing the McMinnville WORKS Internship Program model to set the stage on best practices. The workshop is designed to allow a community to define their own ideal internship program while learning about other internship models created through Oregon WORKS.

The Oregon WORKS Workshops were designed in 2017 and have resulted in three communities in Oregon creating partner “WORKS” programs: Chemeketa WORKS, Gorge WORKS, and Clatsop WORKS.

Applications open on November 13 on MEDP’s website: www.McMinnvilleBusiness.com/oregon-works. The application is open through January 11, 2019. Communities will be chosen to host workshops by January 31, 2019. All four workshops will take place during the Spring of 2019 with the goal of having new WORKS internship programs developed by the summer of 2020.

MEDP Executive Director, Jody Christensen, commented on the initiative, “Creating innovative workforce solutions is crucial and we believe this is one solution that meets the needs of our industries. Growing the Oregon WORK partner network is a strategic talent development move for rural Oregon.”

The Oregon WORKS Workshops are free for participating communities and include a 7-hour training, all workshop materials, and pre and post-workshop coaching session for workshop hosts. More information about the workshops can be found at www.McMinnvilleBusiness.com/oregon-works.

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