For rising high school seniors like Titus Cleveland, the summertime can be transformative in many ways. This summer, Titus is interning in our Development department, where he assists with Children’s Aid fundraising, event planning, and donor relations. His summer role not only provided him with office experience, but was further supplemented with skills-building workshops through the Summer Internship Program (SIP) at the Children’s Aid Hope Leadership Academy.
The six-week program educates high school-aged youth on how to develop their personal brand, while also exposing them to different working environments. The program has given Titus a completely new understanding of all that goes into being career ready.
“During SIP, we went to corporate workplaces to get the feel for how people behave in business environments,” said Titus. “As a summer intern, I got to observe how a professional environment is run, and for me, learning how to dress was a great lesson on how to be career ready.”
One of these workplaces was Madison Square Garden’s Varsity Sports offices, an added treat for Titus. He plans to study sports management or communications in college and found the visit to MSG Varsity very transformative because it helped him see how he could translate his love of sports into potential career opportunities, like sports broadcasting. SIP also helped Titus hone his networking skills, by teaching him and his peers how to advocate for themselves with professionals. An example was simply asking for business cards.
“I got a card from a supervisor I met at the Varsity Sports office, and now I am coming in the fall for a meeting with him,” said Titus. “It’s a new contact that could potentially lead to a job. This is a world where connections really matter, so I am very happy I had the chance to speak with someone whose career I would like to explore further.”