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Year Up Interns Join UIT and SoM

Thursday, February 14, 2019

“Sometimes I sit down and say, is this really happening? It’s such a great opportunity.”

Pictured left to right: Dani Aivazian, IDEAL IT Program Lead; Jon Russell, Senior Director of Service Desk & ITOC; Interns Osmar Veronica (SOM); Anh Pham (SOM); Erik Alvarez (SD); Andre Pezo (SD)

Though expressed by just one of the participants, his words seemed to reflect the sentiments of all the interns joining Stanford as part of the Year Up Internship Program.

The program — one of the pillars of the IDEAL IT initiative — kicked off this month with a luncheon to welcome five new interns to Stanford.

Year Up is a national workforce development organization that seeks to close the “Opportunity Divide” by providing motivated young adults who lack opportunities with the skills, experience, and support that will empower them to reach their potential through professional careers and higher education.

This is the first time Stanford has brought in Year Up students, who will be joining teams in University IT (UIT) and School of Medicine (SoM) for six-month internships. Stanford is piloting a partnership with this organization over the next several months to determine how it might roll out to other units and schools in the future.

Intern Alfredo Acevedo (ISO)

“Year Up is an incredible organization with truly admirable goals,” Stanford CIO Steve Gallagher said. “With a successful pilot, we see a huge opportunity at Stanford to take this beyond University IT and the School of Medicine.”

In mid-June, Year Up founder and CEO Gerald Chertavian will come to campus to share his vision with university leadership and propose how Stanford might become an even bigger Year Up partner in the Bay Area.

Preparing for a bright future through rigorous training and hands-on experience

Prior to starting their internships at Stanford, the students completed six months of training at the San Jose Year Up campus in areas such as help desk/desktop support, cyber security, project management, data analytics, and quality assurance. They also learned critical soft skills like business communication, time management, and public speaking.

Now, in the second phase of the one-year program, they will begin their internships with UIT’s Service Desk, the Information Security Office (ISO), and the SoM Information Resources and Technology Service Desk (IRT Service Desk) to gain hands-on work experience.

Year Up Luncheon

Welcoming the “founding class” to Stanford

The Feb. 5 luncheon brought together UIT and SoM leaders, the managers who will supervise the interns, executives from Year Up, and the interns themselves, to celebrate the new partnership and welcome the the new arrivals to Stanford.

The interns include:

  • Osmar Veronica, who will be working with the SOM IRT Provisioning Team, assisting with procurement and imaging of new computer hardware across SoM.
  • Anh Pham, who will be working with the SoM IRT Tech Bar, providing walk-in tech support for SoM users.
  • Erik Alvarez, who will be working in the UIT Service Desk, providing technical support for centrally-provided technology services.
  • Luis “Andre” Pezo, who will also be working in the UIT Service Desk, providing technical support for centrally provided technology services.
  • Alfredo Acevedo, who will be working on a wide range of initiatives in ISO that are designed to protect the information assets important to the university.

“The five of you will be our Year Up ‘founding class,’ and it is to our great benefit to have you here,” Steve said.

Year Up Executives, Steve Gallagher, Jan Cicero
Pictured left to right: Roosevelt Callahan, Year Up Site Director for Silicon Valley and Facebook Campuses; Vic Espino, Year Up Director of Corporate Engagement; Steve Gallagher, Stanford CIO; Jan Cicero, AVP Client Services

Year Up executives spoke to their selection process and how they chose these five particular interns to join Stanford. “All these students were high performers and we knew they would do very well at Stanford,” said Vic Espino, Director of Corporate Engagement for Year Up. “We wanted to put our best foot forward with this new partnership and wanted to ensure you’re getting the cream of the crop.”

During a brief time of Q&A, the interns wanted to know what Stanford’s expectations were of them, as the first Year Up interns at the university.

Steve encouraged them to take advantage of everything they’ve learned in Year Up and seize the opportunity here because there is so much to learn. He also encouraged them to provide regular feedback about their experience and what Stanford can do better.

The interns were very receptive to his answer, saying, “It’s really great that not only are you providing opportunities for us, but you’re also open to hearing our voices.”

Learn more

Visit the Year Up website to learn more about the program.

Learn more about the Year Up Internship Program at Stanford on the IT at Stanford website.

View photos from the Feb. 5 luncheon.


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