Chicago Summer Business Institute Students Work Toward a Better - KMSP-TV

Chicago Summer Business Institute Students Work Toward a Better Future


While the markets may be down, stock in some Chicago students just went way up.

These students spent the summer learning how to be productive co-workers when they graduate from high school and college.

FOX Chicago’s Darlene Hill was at a special ceremony for the students.

These high school juniors and seniors already know what they want to be when they graduate from college: a psychologist, United States Marshall, defense attorney, mechanical engineer, work in criminal justice, or even a bond trader.

Thursday was the last day of work. Friday was graduation day for 100 students who spent their summer at paid internships in 50 businesses in Chicago.

The Chicago Summer Business Institute started teaming up teens with business mentors 21 years ago.

City Treasurer Stephanie Neely said hundreds of students applied for the opportunity and she remembers what some of them looked like for the interview.

“It's just wonderful to see them then,” Neely said. “See them today, and how we've mentored them. We've fertilized the soil and watched them grow."

The group believes that if you give a child a chance, you can bring out their best and build a better Chicago, too.

"You can see the confidence level rise week by week with them,” Chicago SUmmer Business' Beth Coolige said. “Once a week we take them in as a classroom and we talk to them. They hear different stories from professionals who come in and talk to them about career paths - dress for success and how to work in a business environment."

Instead of sleeping in and hanging out with their friends all day, these students worked 30 hours a week for minimum wage.”

"We had to save 25 percent of each check," junior Isis Sims said. "So I would always save my 25 percent - and extra - and put it in my bank account."

"I learned about bonds and mortgages,” Pricilla Monsivaas, a high school junior said. “And just how the world works - how the real world works."

"I’m interested in government and politics so it's definitely a stepping stone being able to work with the litigation department,” junior Silas Woods said.

It's been tough filling six weeks for these high school students. They're even looking forward to coming back next year. The application process starts in January. The deadline is in April.

The juniors made minimum wage. But if they come back next year, those students will get a raise.

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