Summer on the Cuyahoga encourages students to work in Cleveland - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

'Summer on the Cuyahoga' encourages students to work in Cleveland

Summer on the Cuyahoga shows students what Cleveland has to offer and encourages them to join the workforce. (Source: WOIO) Summer on the Cuyahoga shows students what Cleveland has to offer and encourages them to join the workforce. (Source: WOIO)
Students who participated in the program celebrated in the Terrace Club at Progressive Field. (Source: WOIO) Students who participated in the program celebrated in the Terrace Club at Progressive Field. (Source: WOIO)

A new plan to keep and bring qualified workers to Cleveland.

One organization is trying to give the city a so-called "brain gain."

Students who participated in the Summer on the Cuyahoga program celebrated in the Terrace Club at Progressive Field on Tuesday night.

The program targets college students from across the country, placing them in internships at some of the best companies in town. It also takes them on tours around the city to show what it has to offer. Then it encourages them to return to Cleveland to work full-time after they graduate.

"Let's get the best and the brightest of young people to discover what a great city this is with the opportunities that are here," said Jean Koehler, executive director of the program.

This summer, 72 students worked at 45 businesses, including Key Bank, Jones Day and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

Elyse Frank completed the program last summer.

"Here in Cleveland, everyone's excited to be here. They want to make a difference in the community and they want to give back as well," Frank said.

Colin Yu has lived in Scotland and Toledo and didn't know much about Cleveland.

"I always thought of it as a place to drive through between Toledo and New York," Yu said.

After interning at Key Bank, the rising University of Chicago senior is hoping to land a full-time job here.

"If it was offered to me, I would take it in a heartbeat," said Yu.

Sarah Walton is from Connecticut and a senior at Smith College in Massachusetts.

"I absolutely love it here," Walton said. "I love the vibrance of the city, mixed with the very small town neighborhood feel. And after Smith, I hope to move back here," said Walton.

Last year, there were 62 students in the program. In all, 25 of them interviewed for jobs in Cleveland. Fourteen were able to land positions.

Eight colleges and universities participate in Summer on the Cuyahoga, including Case Western Reserve, Ohio Wesleyan, Denison, Colgate, Cornell, Smith College, University of Chicago and Yale.

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