Victoria Tims, library associate with Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Libraries and former RISE intern, during her internship.

This summer, the RISE (Redefining Internships for Student Empowerment) program through Hillsborough County will give rising seniors from Hillsborough County Public Schools an opportunity to gain hands-on work experience in the local government during a paid, eight-week internship. The goal would be to hire 30 student interns for the summer.

RISE started in 2017 to give rising seniors at Hillsborough County Public Schools a chance to explore career paths, experience working full-time as well as earn money. Since then, around 60 students have participated in this summer internship program.

The interns generally get placed in county departments such as Library Services, Emergency Management, Parks & Recreation, Pet Resources and more. Students also work with mentors to learn professional development skills, which includes writing resumes, interviewing and networking. The program aims to create a pipeline of future leaders in Hillsborough County.

Acquelyn Kindred, talent acquisition partner with Hillsborough County Human Resources and RISE program coordinator, explained what makes this program unique.

“Program leaders strive to line up students with fields and job duties that interest them,” Kindred said.

Victoria Tims, library associate with Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Libraries and former RISE intern, said that with her internship she was able to see the inner workings of the library system and more. In 2020, she interned at the C. Blythe Andrews, Jr. Public Library in Tampa.

Tims provided some advice for those who may be interested in applying for the internship: “Go into the internship with an open mind.”

This internship begins on Monday, June 6 and runs through Friday, July 29. To apply, certain qualifications must be met, such as having a minimum 2.0 grade point average; two letters of recommendation from teachers, community leaders or parents; and proof of vaccination for COVID-19 (or a request for a religious or medical exemption).

The deadline to apply is Saturday, April 16.

Students can apply by visiting the job section on Hillsborough County’s website at

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Tatiana Ortiz
Tatiana Ortiz is a freelance writer with the Osprey Observer Newspaper. She began as an intern here in 2010 and has been writing since. Tatiana graduated from the University of South Florida in 2015. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Public Relations. In her free time, Tatiana enjoys photography, biking and being with her family.