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Mayor's Intern Fellows Program

About the Program


Our Mission – To introduce exemplary Dallas high school students to future careers, professional employment opportunities and valuable workplace skills while providing area companies, nonprofits and government entities a meaningful way to make an investment in the youth of Dallas and its future workforce.

Our History:

The Mayor's Intern Fellows Program (MIFP) was designed in 2007 by Education is Freedom (EIF), who envisioned a world where every young person could pursue a college education or career. In an effort to realize this vision, EIF searched for opportunities to help create an educated workforce that could build effective companies and strong communities in today's knowledge – based economy. While researching and benchmarking intern programs and best practices, EIF identified a stellar program in which to serve as the basis for its program design – The White House Fellows Program. To create a true workforce pipeline in Dallas, EIF partnered with Mayor Tom Leppert and the City of Dallas. In 2008, EIF launched the elite Mayor's Intern Fellows Program with 84 interns, 46 companies and 4 schools. Under Mayor Leppert's leadership, the program increased the number of participating companies by 26%, the number of internships by 31%, and of participating schools by 300%.

In 2012, the Mayor's Intern Fellows Program continued with the leadership of Mayor Mike Rawlings. Mayor Rawlings quickly adopted the program, as it perfectly aligned with his vision for both education and economic growth in the City of Dallas. To provide as many opportunities for students in the City of Dallas, Mayor Rawlings expanded the program to include all Dallas public and charter schools. Under his leadership, the Mayor's Intern Fellows Program has grown over 650%, increasing the number of internships from 59 in 2001 to 395 in 2018, making this one of the largest interns programs in the country. Mayor Rawlings' goal is to continue to provide more opportunities for scholars to gain valuable hands-on experiences that can ultimately prepare the future workforce for the City of Dallas.

The Program:

The Mayor's Intern Fellows Program (MIFP) is an eight-week, paid summer internship program that introduces Dallas public high school students to careers and employment opportunities in industries and companies where they have expressed interest. Modeled after the prestigious White House Fellows, MIFP prepares motivated students to become the leaders of tomorrow.

To qualify for the program students must be at least 16 years of age, be rising juniors and seniors at a Dallas public high school or attend a Richardson ISD high school and also live in the City of Dallas, and be able to work in the United States. Students must also have at least a 3.0 grade point average (at least 85%), have a solid attendance record and be recommended to the program by their high school principal or counselor.

Since its inception in 2008, MIFP has provided 2,570 students with internships. Mayor Mike Rawlings' 2018 program was the largest, most far reaching in program history with 2,400 students representing 52 high schools applying for the program and 1050 qualifying for the competitive Job Fair held in April. A record-breaking 395 students were provided summer internships at major corporations, small businesses, government agencies and nonprofits. Selected interns worked in a variety of fields including accounting, advertising/marketing, architecture, banking and financial services, education, engineering, government, healthcare, hospitality, law, public relations, technology, nonprofits and governmental agencies.

Facilitated by Education is Freedom (EIF), the program provides extensive work-readiness training to all students who apply, and additional leadership development to those selected as interns. As internships draw to a close in August, students and their employers, program sponsors and other area dignitaries join the Mayor at an impressive Intern Fellows Luncheon celebrating the scholars and their outstanding accomplishments.

Mayor's Intern Fellows Program


How it works