Get Engaged

Our employer partners and volunteers help students explore careers, build job skills and make professional connections as they prepare for life after high school.  

employer and volunteer interest form


Hire a High School or College Intern

Step Up Youth Employment Program

Step Up connects Minneapolis youth (ages 14-21) with work readiness training, internships and other career opportunities with Twin Cities employers in 15 employment sectors. Since 2003, Step Up has created over 30,000 high-quality internship opportunities, equipping young people to achieve their career goals and building a more skilled and equitable workforce.

By hiring Step Up interns, your organization can nurture young talent, introduce a new generation of students to your industry and make a difference in your community. Summer internships run from June through early August, with employer recruitment and orientation from December to April. 

program details

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Achieve College Internships

Achieve College Internships connects talented, diverse college juniors with high-quality paid summer internships, professional training, mentors and career networks at local companies and organizations. The program helps young professionals launch their careers in the Twin Cities and provides opportunities for employers to discover and support new talent.

Our interns include Step Up alums, Minneapolis and Saint Paul public schools graduates and Minnesota Private College Fund Black Men's Success Initiative scholars. We've provided professional internships for over 113 students from 20 colleges and universities, linking them with global businesses, local companies and community-based organizations.

Summer internships generally run from June - August, with employer recruitment year-round.

Program details

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Volunteer with Students

Career Exploration Events

Our career exploration events at Minneapolis and Saint Paul high schools inspire, inform and support students as they plan for life after graduation. They are held during the academic year, from September to May.

Whether you work in the trades, business, healthcare, the arts, STEM, government or another sector, you have valuable experience and perspectives that can help students take the first step toward great careers or discover new fields.

You can share your career journey and insights with students as a career speaker, or represent your company or industry at our career fairs.

volunteer interest form

Photo of man speaking to students in a school

Step Up Mock Interviews

Each spring, the Step Up Mock Interviews connect volunteers with Step Up youth participants for one-on-one coaching and support to practice their job interview skills in preparation for summer Step Up internships and other career exploration.

Each volunteer interviews 3-5 young people and provides constructive feedback for strengthening their skills and professional presentation. Volunteers receive an orientation and sample questions before the interviews. This is a fun and engaging way to support our young people as they prepare for summer internships and future career success.

Mock interviews are held in March or April, with registration opening in February. Please note that because of tremendous interest, there are limited volunteer slots available. We welcome individual volunteers as well as company teams.

volunteer interest form

A woman talks with a student at a table

“Achieve career events provide a great way for students to learn about new opportunities. Most young people have heard about being a doctor or lawyer - but likely don't know what an account executive, machinist, project manager or cosmetologist does, or the growth and financial prosperity these careers can provide.”

Elaine Vandenburgh, Minneapolis College
Volunteer sitting at table with studnet

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career and college readiness programs.