DARLINGTON — Thirty-one Darlington County School District (DCSD) students officially began 12-week, paid internships with 20 different employers on Tuesday, Feb. 18.
The Spring Intern Signing Day ceremony was held inside Mayo High School for Math, Science and Technology’s Conference Center in front of friends, family, school staff and local business partners.
The internships are arranged through partnerships with employers in Darlington and Florence counties and DCSD’s Key to Career program.
In the 11 months since the program’s inception, nearly 100 DCSD students participated in internships.
The three previous cohorts of interns earned more than $100,000 in combined salaries. Tuesday’s group of internships is expected to boost that figure to more than $130,000 by summer.
The Key to Career program has nearly 40 total business partners who pay student interns between $8 and $10 an hour.
District Superintendent Dr. Tim Newman said these internships are a response to recognizing the practical skills students need as they move toward graduation as well as the needs of the greater Darlington County community.
“Our businesses are telling us that they need to have young people that are available and coachable. That is exactly what we are providing with Key to Career,” Newman said. “At the same time, this is giving our students real-world experience in a workplace environment. Plus, they are being paid for their hard work. We are excited for this group of student interns and the future of Key to Career in Darlington County School District.”
School career specialists and school counselors recommended the student interns, who underwent professional skills training and interviewed for available positions.
The internships will take place at the employers’ campuses and will help prepare the students for life after high school.
Quinetta Buterbaugh, DCSD’s business engagement coordinator and leader of Key to Career, said the student interns who signed on Tuesday morning are well prepared to get started.
“This group of students is motivated and committed to working for these employers,” Buterbaugh said. “They interviewed really well, and that is a credit their career specialists and school counselors who have worked to prepare them for their internships. I’m looking forward to watching them grow through this experience.”
The student interns, along with the respective businesses, are listed below. Many of the students also attended the Darlington County Institute of Technology.
Tiyonna Dolford, Hartsville High School — The Byerly Foundation
Tyler Hicks, Lamar High School — Canfor Southern Pine
Tyquez Goodson, Hartsville High School — CareSouth Carolina, Inc.
Shaniya Jackson, Hartsville High School — CareSouth Carolina, Inc.
Taiyana Jackson, Hartsville High School — CareSouth Carolina, Inc.
Annie Milling, Darlington High School — CareSouth Carolina, Inc.
Shy’Asia Peterkin, Darlington High School — CareSouth Carolina, Inc.
Fundisha Byrd, Hartsville High School — Carolina Bank
Dylan Cassidy, Hartsville High School — City of Hartsville
Ta’Kayla Graham, Hartsville High School — City of Hartsville
Kiel Wilson, Hartsville High School — City of Hartsville
Raquan Brown, Darlington High School — Darlington Veneer Company
Zeron Simon, Darlington High School — Darlington Veneer Company
Charles Smith, Darlington High School — Darlington Veneer Company
Chancellor Hanner, Darlington High School — Dedicated Community Bank
Michael Kerr, Hartsville High School — Driggers Law Firm
Jack Bethea, Hartsville High School — Fazier Industrial Co.
ShaKira Mills, Darlington High School — Genesis Healthcare, Inc.
Skylar Stephens, Hartsville High School — Genesis Healthcare, Inc.
Trace Kirkley, Hartsville High School — Hogge Precision Parts Co., Inc.
Madison DuBose, Darlington High School — Hope Health
Mikela Wright, Darlington High School — Hope Health
Madelynn Lewis, Hartsville High School — Indigo Salon and Day Spa
Ronnie Abson, Lamar High School — JBE, Inc.
Cody Kidd, Hartsville High School — JRI, Inc.
Smantha Coll, Hartsville High School — Maryland Fried Chicken Hartsville, LLC
Makenzy Hall, Hartsville High School — PolyQuest, Inc.
Elmer Mack, Hartsville High School — PolyQuest, Inc.
Deon Pooler, Hartsville High School — Sam Kendall’s
Colby Turner, Hartsville High School — Sonoco
Alexandra Gardner, Hartsville High School — Thomas Hart Academy
Businesses interested in participating in the Key to Career program may contact Buterbaugh at 843-398-3520 and visit www.dcsdschools.org/keytocareer.