Pohlad Internship Program

Pohlad Family Foundation Youth Internship Program Information

ThreeSixty Journalism interns interview Minnesota Twins players at Target Field.

ThreeSixty Journalism interns interview Minnesota Twins players at Target Field.

Since 2005, MNA has partnered with the Pohlad Family Foundation and its Summer Youth Employment Program to offer high school students across Minnesota an opportunity to experience firsthand, employment at a community newspaper. The program provides wage subsidies to Minnesota newspapers that hire high school-aged interns for summer internships.

The board of directors of the Pohlad Family Foundation has migrated the Summer Youth Employment programs into its Youth Advancement program. The Youth Advancement program aims to support and serve low-income youth that are disconnected from educational and employment opportunities, with the goal of helping young people gain skills needed to participate successfully in the workforce.

What does this mean for MNA’s Pohlad Internship Program?

We suggest that extra consideration should be given to students with economic need. We ask participating member newspapers hiring local youth to think critically about the intern recruitment process in order to help meet the goal of increasingly reaching low-income youth.

Ideas for intern recruitment:

  • Get in touch with local workforce development centers to recruit your interns. The professionals there can help connect you with youth looking for paid work experience. Use the flyer in the enrollment packet to share your internship information with local centers.
  • Recruit at your local high school, but consider getting in touch with the counseling department (perhaps before you went to the high school English teacher or newspaper adviser). The school counseling department may be able to help you find a candidate.
  • Find helpful resources from The Grads of Life. A campaign that seeks to change perceptions employers have of young people with atypical resumes. Visit http://gradsoflife.org/ for info and resources.
  • You can use the promotional flyer we’ve created – page 3 of the enrollment packet – as a recruitment aid. Fill in your contact info and pass along to your local work force center or high school counseling department. The professionals in both of these places can help send potential intern applicants to you at the newspaper. We’re also working to tell Minnesota work force centers about our program, and others like it.

About the Pohlad Family Foundation:

PFF logoThe mission of the Pohlad Family Foundation is to improve the quality of life in the Minneapolis-St. Paul region by supporting organizations and leading initiatives that address important issues and needs. Youth programs have been at the center of the Pohlad Family Foundation’s giving since its inception.  The Foundation supports efforts to assist young people in their transition to adulthood. For more information on the foundation and its work, visit http://pohladfoundation.org/.

How the program works:

  • Complete an enrollment form stating that you will hire a high school intern and wish to participate in the Summer Youth Internship subsidy program. Forms are available for download here, and can be submitted by mail, fax, or email. We have 45 internships available this summer. They are available on a first-come, first-served basis. We will confirm by email your enrollment in the program when we receive your form.
  • You choose a high school student, age 16-19, who will work for your newspaper in any aspect of the business half-time for 10 weeks; recent high school graduates are eligible.
  • College students and relatives of newspaper staff do not qualify for this program.
  • The Pohlad Family Foundation requires that newspapers pay a portion of the intern’s wage to ensure a strong commitment from the participants and recommends an hourly wage of $8.00/hour for interns participating in the program.
  • The reimbursement grant is calculated like this:
    • First time interns: Member newspapers will be reimbursed for 75% of the intern’s wage, up to $1,200. For example: 20 hours per week, for 10 weeks, times $8 an hour (suggested wage) — the Pohlad Family Foundation grant will pay $6 of that $8 wage.
    • Repeat interns: Member newspapers, hiring interns for the second time, will be reimbursed for 40% of the intern’s wage, up to $640. For example: 20 hours per week, for 10 weeks, times $8 an hour (suggested wage) — the Pohlad Family Foundation grant will pay $3.20 of that $8 wage.

Download 2017 Enrollment Packet
Download 2017 FAQ

Questions? Interested?
Contact LuAnn Yattaw | luann@mna.org or 612-278-0235


2016 Pohlad Internship Program

Over the course of summer 2016, 57 high school-aged interns across the State of Minnesota were employed by their local, community newspaper. These interns, all currently enrolled as high school students, or recently graduated in the spring of 2016 worked more than 8,444 hours, and contributed hundreds of photos, stories, columns, blog posts, page designs, Facebook entries and Tweets to their community newspaper.

Photo by Detroit Lakes Tribune Summer Intern

Photo by Detroit Lakes Tribune Summer Intern

Both students and their host newspapers report benefitting immensely from this program.

Interns report building skills in photography, design, writing, editing and interviewing. Many interns said they learned the value of picking up the phone and speaking directly to subjects of interviews, instead of trying to do everything via email.

“I am building up a resume and experience that will help me as I apply for jobs and start a career after college,” said one intern.

Photo by Detroit Lakes Tribune Summer Intern

Photo by Detroit Lakes Tribune Summer Intern

This internship experience really provides a unique hands-on professional workplace experience to youth. Interns aren’t just fetching coffee or making copies. Interns are out in the community, often working independently covering community events and news. They also get a real taste for what a career at a newspaper may look like, as they ponder future plans.

Supervisors tell us that above all, many of the interns built confidence in themselves and their abilities over the course of the summer. “[Our intern] got over her fears of asking questions and seeking information, and learned to assert herself more. She was also fearless when it came to writing opinion columns, even when her views put her in the community spotlight.”

This program is a huge asset to youth across the state of Minnesota and the small, community newspapers nestled in each city, town, and county.

Click here to read our full report and intern work!

—Sarah Jackson, Program Director
Minnesota Newspaper Association