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Interns in the Jewish Community Learn Skills While Helping Agencies

With another hot and humid summer in full swing, Louisville’s Jewish Community Summer Internship program is off to another great year. The Internship program is currently in its 14th year and growing every summer. Every winter ads go out seeking qualified college students to come and bring their talents and skills back to our local Jewish community. This summer four interns were chosen to participate, as well as one from Yale University’s Bulldogs in the Bluegrass program.

Ellen Shapira, a senior career counselor at Jewish Family & Career Services, administers the program.

Not only does the internship program offer valuable career experience in a variety of fields, but it also offers a great chance to network within our community, as well as to give back. Participants are employed at both the JCC and JFCS, and each internship focuses on each student’s career goals and interests. This summer there are two interns at the Jewish Community Center and three at Jewish Family & Career Services.

Benjamin Koby
Ben Koby is a rising sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in chemistry and statistics, with a minor in mathematics. Officially the IT intern at the Jewish Community Center, he really enjoys the position because it exposes him to many different aspects of business. Not only is he gaining valuable skills and a more complete knowledge of IT, but he is also learning a great deal about this particular field. Koby has done a little bit of everything from fixing computers and cables to working on various IT projects.

Originally, he applied for the internship because he believed it would be a fun and productive way to spend his summer, but he remarks that it has also improved his connections within the Louisville Jewish community. While at duPont Manual he was an active member of BBYO and says that this internship has helped reestablish those connections with the community.

In school he is a member of Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity, and enjoys spending time with his brothers.

He is the son of Risa and Chuck Koby, and a member of Adath Jeshurun.

Cole Finke
Cole Finke is a rising sophomore at Cornell University. He is always up for a challenge and is in the Industrial and Labor Relations School, planning to concentrate in business or law, all while pursuing minors in business and Spanish. While unsure of an exact career path, he is interested in working in business, possibly finance or consulting, or attending law school. He hopes to move back to Louisville a few years after graduating college.
Finke is interning for the JFCS Center for Enterprise Development, as the micro-enterprise program assistant.

The JFCS Center for Enterprise Development provides low-income individuals with the skills they need to start their own businesses. It also provides microloans and financial assistance to businesses that might not be eligible for loans from a bank.

He applied because of his strong interest in business development and consulting. As the micro-enterprise program assistant, Finke analyzes the potential success of new businesses in various markets. His main project has been developing a new curriculum for the eight-week Navigate business course, which educates clients on the process of starting a successful business.

He is a member of Cornell’s Sigma Chi chapter, in which he serves as chapter steward. Finke is also a member of the sports business society, the Intrafraternity Council new member education committee, and the student assembly campus life committee.

He is the son David and Helene Finke, and a member of The Temple.

Joseph Harlan
Joe Harlan is a rising sophomore at the University of Southern California, studying theater with an emphasis in acting. His future aspirations include starting his own improv troupe, and to be a screen and/or stage performer, writer, director and educator. Wanting to experience the non-performing side of a theater company, Harlan is the CenterStage Theatre Intern.

Harlan has been busy working on CenterStage’s social media marketing, assisting with prop storage organization, acquiring school contacts for Acting Out (a professional touring children’s theater troupe), planning and researching for Louisville’s Got Talent, merchandise acquisition, copy editing and various other routine activities. He hopes to gain a firm grasp on the business and administrative side to a theater company as well as contacts in the community, by the end of his program.

While at school Harlan is involved with that School of Cinematic Arts, specifically working with casting and student films. He is also a member of the Backyard Chicken Club, which promotes and educates the student body at USC about domestic chicken keeping, for eggs, meat or as pets.
Harlan is the son of Mike and Sarah Harlan, and a member of The Temple.

Kevin Huang
While the other interns are all native Louisvillians, Kevin Huang came all the way from Boston to intern at JFCS. He is a rising sophomore economics student at Yale University, and is taking part in Yale’s Bulldogs in the Bluegrass program. Sponsored by Kentucky Yale alumni, the program encourages current Yale students to seek employment in the Greater Louisville area.

Students apply directly for the internships of their choice, and the Bulldogs in the Bluegrass program provides housing, social events and the opportunity to engage with leaders in the Louisville community.

To date, Bulldogs in the Bluegrass has brought over 400 Yale students to Louisville. According to their website, over 40 Yale graduates have moved to Louisville after their internship experiences here.

Along with Finke, Huang is a micro-enterprise program assistant at the JFCS Center for Enterprise Development. He applied for the internship at JFCS because he wanted to experience microfinance in real life and make a difference in people’s lives by giving them the means to get out of the cycle of poverty.

For Huang, the most interesting part of the job so far is that he created a curriculum for the clients to help them assimilate to American business culture, from which, he says, he has learned quite a bit himself. He hopes to gain an understanding of how to start his own business. And of course, to have helped at least one of his clients pursue his or her dreams and achieve financial independence.

Not only is Huang enjoying the internship, but he is also taking advantage of all that the city has to offer. He has already been to Downs After Dark, met with U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth and Mayor Greg Fischer, and particularly enjoyed a kayaking trip to Elkhorn Creek. However, by the time his program is over he hopes to understand the UofL/UK rivalry and see a concert at the Yum! Center.

Back in Boston he is involved with Net Impact (a social enterprise group) and Berkeley College Orchestra (first violin).
He is the son of Guangfei Huang and Jianhua Zeng of Gainesville, FL.
Becca Waller

I am going into my senior year at the University of Louisville, majoring in communications with a focus in public relations and minoring in psychology. This summer, I am the marketing intern with the Marketing and Development Department at JFCS.

It’s definitely been a busy summer so far for me. I began in early May and got right to work helping with the MOSAIC Awards, an annual program that celebrates and honors refugees and immigrants who have come to Louisville and achieved phenomenal things.

I was involved with everything from meeting with the event team down at the Marriott and creating the centerpieces, to getting the awards and sending thank you letters. It was an event that I was honored to have my hand in.

I took a little break midway through my program to travel and experience Israel through the Taglit-Birthright program! For two weeks I explored new places, got out of my comfort zone, tried lots of new food and met friends that I will cherish and remember forever. It was a trip of a lifetime, and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to visit the place I’ve always dreamed about visiting.

As soon as I got back to JFCS, I had to hit the ground rolling with everything golf related. I only had a week before the Republic Bank Player’s Challenge. My main task was collecting donation items for the silent auction.

I have really enjoyed my time spent with JFCS and I owe a great deal of that to my wonderful boss, Beverly Bromley, who has taught me an abundance of skills that are great to always have in my back pocket.

At UofL, I am an active member of Pi Beta Phi Women’s Fraternity serving as sisterhood chair, a member of both Panhellenic Council and Hillel, as well as raiseRED, UofL’s Dance Marathon, for which I have been a member of the Executive Board for three years. In my spare time I can be either be found cheering on the Cards or playing with my puppy.

My parents are Bill and Stacy Waller, and I am a member of Temple Shalom.

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