Wesleyan’s Career Center has announced they are partnering with the CLIMB (Colorado Leaders, Interns, Mentors in Business) Internship Program, based in Denver, Colorado. The 30-40 students who participate in the program will have the opportunity to hold paid internship positions across a multitude of fields, as well as participate in various CLIMB-sponsored and alumni-sponsored events.
“The cornerstone of the program is to provide high-quality, 7-10-week paid summer internships (private, nonprofit, and public),” the CLIMB website reads. “The program offers a wide range of employment opportunities in metro Denver.”
Jim Kubat, the Associate Director for Jobs and Internship Development at the Gordon Career Center, notes that CLIMB is intended for all students, and is not tailored to any specific major or interest. Instead, CLIMB internships span a broad variety of fields and industries in the Denver area.
“It’s meant to fit as wide a variety of interests as possible, so that all students can potentially benefit,” Kubat said in an email to The Argus.
Examples of available internships include the positions of Biomedical Research Intern for the Webb-Waring Center, Outdoor Stewardship Program Assistant for the Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, and Simulator Engineering Intern for Pathfinders Systems, Inc., along with ten other potential positions. Some internship opportunities, such as the Gates Center Summer Internship Program, have multiple openings for students. More internships, according to Kubat, are expected to become available as the semester progresses, and an internship specifically for Wesleyan students called the Cardinal Internship was recently added. Each internship has its own specific duties and required skills, but all are generally intended for bright and enthusiastic individuals.
“A program like CLIMB is ideal for liberal arts students,” Kubat explained. “[It provides] them opportunities to explore and refine their career interests; learn new skills and gain professional experience; meet new people and further develop professional networking skills; and overall enabling them to apply [their] campus education off-campus in the world of work.”
In addition to paid internships, CLIMB sponsors events in and around Denver for participating students. Events in the past have included conversations with the Mayor of Denver and the President and CEO of the Denver Broncos, a lecture and Shakespeare play, various picnics and hikes, rafting on the Colorado and Arkansas rivers, and alumni-hosted dinners.
Because of the focus on connecting students with alumni, CLIMB has a strong relationship with many alumni organizations of participating colleges and universities. Students are paired with alumni “mentors” who offer support and act as guides to the Denver area.
According to the CLIMB website, the overall aim of the program is to provide an engaging education for students from top universities, as well as connect students with mentors, and improve Denver and Colorado in the process.
“We believe this program will have major benefits to Denver and Colorado,” the CLIMB website’s description of the program’s vision reads. “The growth and excellence of Silicon Valley was generated, in no small part, by Frederick Terman who nurtured and encouraged entrepreneurs, engineers and young leaders of Stanford and other universities to settle in Silicon Valley to build their businesses and lives. Denver is a beautiful and suitable place for the leaders of tomorrow to get to know, to appreciate, and to return to. CLIMB will help students, entrepreneurs, leaders, and creators, and encourage them to return and improve Denver.”
Wesleyan became involved in this program when Kubat was put in touch with CLIMB through Wesleyan alumnus Mike Fries ’85. Fries is the President and CEO of Liberty Global, Denver, and is a Wesleyan Trustee.
“Mike is interested in expanding internship opportunities for Wesleyan students,” Kubat explained.
Wesleyan students will be joining students from Yale University, Harvard University, Middlebury College, MIT, Brown University, Stanford University, Denison University, and Northwestern McCormick School of Engineering in participation in this Denver-based program.
“2006 was the inaugural year for the Denver internship program,” the CLIMB website describes. “It was a tremendous success with 13 interns from Yale in the Denver area. The program doubled in the summer of 2007 with 24 student interns (20 from Yale and 4 from Middlebury). In 2008, there were 34 summer interns from Yale, Middlebury, Stanford, and MIT.”
Now, in 2017, Wesleyan is joining the mix.