NEWPORT—Even though it was a miserable, rainy day last Friday, Newport Utilities' trucks were still on the move, to ensure that everyone would still have power when the rain stopped.
Sharon Kyser, the Marketing and Public Relations Manager at Newport Utility, offered kind words about the linemen that are still out and about, “We want to be a resource to the people.”
Newport Utilities also wants to be a solid resource for the future of the county. To achieve that goal, the utility service has been offering internships to high school graduates for the past few years. Though the interns have to be at least eighteen years old to work for utilities, Kyser has noticed that many teenagers have taken an interest in the opportunity.
This year, Newport Utilities has seven student interns, which is growth since last year’s group. Some of these interns were also a part of the program last year and took the opportunity to come back and expand other sets of skills. The internship is a summer only job, but the interns are given paid positions and work roughly forty hours a week.
Though the interns are often used to help with marketing and sales, some of them choose to work in the warehouse or the IT department. This allows for the interns to work in facets of the company that interest them. The interns are exposed to many different facets of the business and are also not required to have any prior experience with the job position.
Newport Utilities hopes that utilizing the youth of the county will show that there are plenty of jobs to be had nearby. This, in turn, will hopefully bring more people back to the area. Kyser also believes that the interns allow for Newport Utilities to be more in tune with the people that they serve.
The community is also very receptive to the interns, especially those that are making calls or boots on the ground salespeople. Many people within the community “respond well to their energy,” according to Kyser. Newport Utilities hopes to use the interns as a face for their company. Showing that the utility service is interested in giving the youth of the county opportunities to not only make money over the summer but also to see what interests them.