One of the ambitious programs that sets Millbrook apart from other boarding schools is our MillbrookEngage summer internship program. The brainchild of Herb Schultz '63, the program is designed to afford students the opportunity to get a paid summer internship at a non-profit organization. Herb was interested in expanding Millbrook's community service ethic beyond campus. It is a win-win for everyone involved because the participating organizations are able to benefit from the extra help without the extra cost, and students are able to obtain real-world work experience while giving back. As Acting Headmaster Jon Downs '98 says, "There is no better way to learn about the real world than to get a job!"
The final piece to having an internship in the program is to share details of the experience with others in the form of a chapel talk. Most of this year's participants were inspired to join the program after hearing about organizations and opportunities from prior interns' chapel talks. The chapel talk is also an opportunity for the members of the MillbrookEngage program to meet and thank Herb for his good work in starting and supporting the program.
The program supported seven students this year. Gabby Kirikian '20 worked on archiving and preserving prints and negatives with the Gordon Parks Foundation. Charlotte Golden '20 and Jackie Crowley '20 pursued opportunities in the health and science fields by doing medical research with the Cornell Weill Medicine Center and the Danbury Hospital respectively. Nathaniel Clizbe '20 and Jonathan DeStazio '20 focused their efforts a little closer to home working with Grace Immigrant Outreach and Barlis Wedlick Architects. Providing services in their hometowns, Andrew Lymm '20 worked for the New York Supreme Court, and Jack Bloom '20 worked for a community relief organization called Can'd Aid.
At Millbrook we have recognized the strength and potential of the program since its inception, but other organizations are taking notice as well. In April 2019 Millbrook received a $250,000 grant on a 1:2 match from The Edward E. Ford Foundation whose mission “seeks to improve secondary education by supporting independent schools and encouraging promising practices.” With this grant Millbrook will have adequate funding for the next five years, enabling us to offer internships to as many as 15 students, or roughly 15% of the rising VIth form class, each year. The greater number of students spreading the values of living Non Sibi Sed Cunctis, the better the world will be. We look forward to seeing what amazing opportunities students have in the future and supporting them in those endeavors.