Saint Xavier University (SXU) is pleased to announce that the Office of Career Services recently received a $10,000 Illinois Cooperative Work Study (ICWS) Program grant to support internship opportunities from the Illinois Board of Higher Education.
The funding will be used to expand SXU’s ability to help students pursue paid internships, cooperative programs with business and industry, and other work opportunities linked to academic programs.
This is the latest of many grants that SXU has received from the ICWS program, which was created in 1991 with the aim of reducing Illinois college students’ reliance on loans while creating linkages between Illinois universities and local employers. Because of their high level of financial need, many SXU students cannot afford to participate in unpaid internships. ICWS grant funds are matched by participating employers in order to provide more paid internship opportunities for our students. Local social service, educational, and not-for-profit agencies have been particularly active participants in the program.
The program’s results have been impressive. According to Assistant Director of Career Services Jodi Martin, every student who has been placed in an ICWS-supported internship has persisted in his or her studies to graduation. Moreover, students who have participated in the program find that their courses take on a higher relevance because of real-world experience, which supports the theory taught in the classroom. Students also report increased self-confidence because they can demonstrate competency in their field of study. In addition, internship experiences have been proven to strengthen graduates’ competitiveness for employment.
SXU welcomes the opportunity to develop additional partnerships with local employers capable of providing internships and career opportunities for SXU students. Interested employers should contact Jodi Martin at (773) 298-3133 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the program.