by DREW HOWARD
Students pursuing a career in municipal government are being encouraged to apply for the City of Rochester Hills’ “Pathway to Public Service Program,” a new initiative purposed with fostering the next generation of city employees.
The Pathway to Public Service Program includes four components: an internship program, a fellowship program, and outreach programs targeting high school students and college career planning and placement professionals. Funding for such initiatives is being made possible by a $30,000 grant from Wells Fargo.
The City of Rochester Hills will award six fellowships of $5,000 each toward college juniors, seniors or master’s degree students to offset educational costs. As a condition of the fellowship, recipients will be required to participate in an interactive group project led by the Mayor’s Office that will explore the what, why and how behind the City of Rochester Hills’ work. Recipients will also be tasked with a group project and presentation.
“We encourage people to apply for the program because we’re interested in recruiting the next generation of employees,” Barnett said. “We want to elevate awareness and understanding of rewarding careers in municipal government – especially here in Rochester Hills. Most of all, this is an incredible opportunity from which we’d like others to benefit.”
The Wells Fargo grant will also fund the onboarding of four college interns with the City of Rochester Hills who will work with the city between now and April.
At the same time, Rochester Hills will continue to promote municipal government careers among high school and college students as part of the new program. The city has already connected with the Michigan Career Education & Employer Alliance (MCEEA) to keep such careers visible when advising college students about career opportunities.
Rochester Hills reached thousands of students when it participated in Rochester Community Schools’ Authentic Career Experience program and the MI Career Quest SE event last year. The latter enabled the city to connect with more than 7,000 high school students from 100 schools in just one day.
“We love telling the story of our City and talking about careers that students may have never considered,” Mayor Barnett wrote in the press release. “We’re being proactive and intentional about reaching out to the next generation and to those who influence them.”
“We want to be proactive about creating a constant pipeline of the best and brightest candidates to fill job openings in the city for years to come,” he continued. “Even better, we anticipate our ‘Pathway to Public Service’ program will become a model for other communities to replicate throughout the country.”
Candidates for the “Pathway to Public Service” fellowship have until March 8 to apply online at rochesterhills.org/.