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News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Monday July 15th 2024

Celebrating the STEP-UP Interns & their accomplishments!

STEP-UP Interns receiving words of encouragement from Backyard Initiative staff members Rose Lobley and Roberta Barnes and spoken word artist and BYI member, Amged Yusef.

September marks the end of summer and a new school year. But for the STEP-UP Interns employed by the Cultural Wellness Center during the summer, it also represents how 9 interns from our community spent a summer acquiring skills and experiences that will help them step more fully into their futures.

Our excellent STEP-UP intern team members: Ayuub Ahmed, Zakeria Essa, Kayla Savold, Zakaria Mohamed, Mohamed Mohamed, Damoro Cisse, Bianca Gutierrez, Deja Frazier, and Zahira Lopez

STEP-UP is directed by Mpls.”'s office of Community Planning and Economic Development. STEP-UP Discover offers entry-level internships for youth 14 and 15 years of age. These internships are intended to reach youth with limited work experience and are designed to develop skills and explore interests in preparation for more challenging opportunities.

Nine STEP-UP interns worked on Backyard Initiative (BYI) and Slow Roll Biking activities. Some of their BYI job responsibilities included planting and growing herbs in container planters at the Midtown Global Market. They assisted in ReTHINK Your Drink awareness campaign, carrying key messages about the adverse health effects of consistent consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.  Interns gained skills in: customer service, leadership, communication, computer, financial management, project development, and entrepreneurship. Meet several of our nine, wonderful STEP-UP interns!

Questions to which they responded:

1. What was it like having a job for the first time?

2. What was your work experience like?

Bianca Jadira Gutierrez
My working for the first time was very fun, they made learning and working a fun experience. I was a little nervous on working because I have never worked. But overall working at the Cultural Wellness Center in the Backyard and Slow-Roll was lots of fun, and I learned so much, I never knew learning could this much fun, and all in a welcoming environment.


Damoro Flamory Cisse
Honesty I felt like the job was easy, and that is most likely because Ms. Roberta and Ms. Rose took it easy on us being that it was our first job experience. The experience was great! I learned a lot and have been able to improve myself, professionally and personally.


Mohamed Mohamed
My first work experience was none, originally I was nervous, but once I was at the Cultural Wellness Center Backyard Initiative located at the Midtown Global Market I think they made it easy, welcoming, and very comfortable. I learned a lot about career choices and how to pursue my goals. We learned a variety of skills like gardening, biking.


Deja Lyric Frazier
My first work experience was better than I expected. I would always hear about how either working is boring or something bad happens, but not at this one. This job made me realize how responsible I need to be and how much health matters personally and throughout community. We are not isolated or separate from our community, and all things positive rooted in community.


Zakeria Amin Essa
My first day I was kinda of nervous, I have never worked a job before this one, but I was also excited at the same time. My experience working here at the Cultural Wellness Center in the Backyard and with Slow Roll, was great, and the leadership, team building, and job skills I will use to help me on future jobs. I also learned that health and wellness should be a priority in my life, even at my age.

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