Red Gamso, Director of Marketing & Communications
AMANDA BEIGHTS, SENIOR DIRECTOR, LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS
Hasan Kajtezovic, Supply Chain Manager – Team Synergyexperience with Arthrex, and graduate of Associate Leadership Collier (ALC) Class of 2019, understands how strong community leadership programming can cultivate economic opportunity for all. Knowing this, Hasan took on a world-class leadership role to work with his home county of Bosnia, and with the Leadership Collier Foundation(LCF) of the Greater Naples Chamber to create a Bosnian ALC program!
As noted in the Congress of Bosniaks of North America: "On July 13th, 2021, the Congress of Bosniaks of North America successfully completed the ‘New Leaders of Una-Sana Canton’ program, which launched on June 10th, 2021. This year’s program took place in Bihać, Bosnia, and Herzegovina, and was attended by 15 working professionals who successfully completed the program. The aim of this program was the transfer of knowledge and best practices from the U.S. to Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce (Naples, FL) has successfully run a similar program in the U.S. for the past several years. The Congress of Bosniaks of North America, through the effort of its Director of Homeland Relations, Mr. Hasan Kajtezovic, was able to bring together the Chambers of Commerce from Naples, FL and Una Sana Canton and facilitate the transfer of knowledge and best practices between the two organizations. The program is supported by the USAID ‘Diaspora Invest’ project."
Hasan will continue to work with his Bosnian partners and Amanda Beights, Senior Director of Leadership Programs, for consultation as all work to continue to expand successful international programming.
AMANDA BEIGHTS, SENIOR DIRECTOR, LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS
The Leadership Collier Foundation (LCF), of the Greater Naples Chamber, held its graduation of the Youth Leadership Collier (YLC) program on Friday, June 18, 2021 at The Players Club & Spa. Sarah Geroy (YLC '13) was honored with the 2021 Youth Leadership Collier Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award. The award was established to honor Donna MacNiven, founder of Youth Leadership Collier, and to recognize a Youth Leadership Collier Alumnus that exemplifies leadership through their community involvement and professional achievements.
The mission of YLC is to develop ethical leaders committed to active community involvement. Reaching over 500 students to date, Youth Leadership Collier (YLC) empowers students to become effective leaders through hands on experiences and field work, while encouraging students to begin their careers and community leadership in Collier County.
The LCF Board of Directors congratulates the graduates of the Youth Leadership Collier Class of 2021:
GUEST CONTRIBUTOR, ASHLEIGH DROZ, DIRECTOR OF THE OFFICE OF INTERNSHIPS & COOPERATIVE PROGRAMS, FLORIDA GULF COAST UNIVERSITY
An internship is more than a job. In fact, for many, a work-based learning experience, such as an internship or cooperative program, can be career-affirming or career-altering. Whether a high school student dipping their toes in the proverbial water before diving into a college major, a university student exploring or gaining experience in their intended field before graduation, or a seasoned professional looking to make a career change, these types of experiences can inspire passion, persistence, or a critical pivot in those who will ultimately be the future of our fields.
So how do we ensure that the opportunities we offer will serve as high quality learning experiences for hungry future interns of all ages? By incorporating a few critical components that will both challenge and support them as they expand their professional horizons. Let’s dig in.
First, work together with your intern to create clear learning objectives related to their professional goals and academic coursework. Successful internships always start with clear outcomes. Sitting down with an intern to discuss who they are and where they are headed means you can create an experience that aligns with their end-goal AND yours. You’ll see much more enthusiasm, energy, and excitement. And if you follow through with projects that line up with these goals? Well, you are also bound to see more satisfaction, productivity, and commitment. That’s a win-win.
Engage student-interns in authentic tasks considered meaningful to the organization. Internships can get a bad rap. We often see interns in the media spilling whole-office coffee runs down the front of their suits, filing mountains of paperwork for weeks on end, or picking up the boss’ dry cleaning (think: The Devil Wears Prada). However, a high quality internship experience should instead encourage the practical application of academic coursework and skills development in a professional setting. The best way to do this usually includes hands-on projects that align with your company’s overall mission and everyday efforts, as well as the intern’s career and academic goals. Not only will an intern gain a strong foundation of work experience, but they will also be much happier with their employer – YOU – if they feel they are making a contribution where it really counts.
Provide student-interns with supervision by and support from an experienced professional in the field in which the intern will be working. On the most basic level, a great internship comes with a designated supervisor who has experience in the intern’s area of focus. This is an important distinction to make on many levels! For example, let’s say you are interested in hiring an intern to work on your organization’s social media. My first question to you would be “who currently oversees your social media?” If your answer is something along the lines of “our in-house social media expert”, we’re golden! If your answer is more like “no one, that’s why we need an intern”… well, you are likely looking for a part-time employee or a contract hire. A student needs someone to learn from who is also accessible, supportive, and available to provide routine feedback, as an internship is meant to be a supplement of a valuable education.
Lastly, ensure a comfortable, safe, and empowering environment as a foundation for a student-intern’s experience. Taking stock of the current culture, resources, and physical space of your workplace is an important step before bringing on an intern. We generally consider the physical safety of our spaces regularly, but it is also important to check in with the inter-workplace dynamics, organizational policies, overall expectations, and technology and facilities available to ensure your student has what they need to be successful. If an intern’s basic professional needs are met, they are much more likely to shine!
These components are bound to get you started on laying the groundwork for a successful internship program, in part before your intern even starts! There is always room to improve and evolve as an internship host or supervisor, but these first few steps are bound to carry you and your team – interns included – through the type of experience everyone will benefit from, now and in the future.
To start your internship experience, contact Alex Breault (email@example.com) at the Greater Naples Chamber to learn more about engaging in work-based learning and how she can help you implement an internship program.
Guest Contributor, Ashleigh Droz (firstname.lastname@example.org) Director of the office of Internships & Cooperative Programs at Florida Gulf Coast University.
What does your role entail at the Supervisor of Elections Office?
As Chief Deputy Supervisor of Elections, I am tasked with overall management of the office from the administrative side – budget, human resources, office administration, to the elections side where I oversee various departments. Together we coordinate and conduct successful elections while ensuring the security and integrity of the voting process.
How did Leadership Collier help you as a leader to be part of building a stronger Collier County?
I initially participated in the Associate Leadership Collier (formerly GAIN) Spring Class of 2010, and after completion just knew that I wanted to participate in Leadership Collier. Leadership Collier introduced me to so many different aspects of Collier County and truly instilled a passion and desire in me to want to help and give back to our community.
What advice would you provide other classmates on how to stay engaged and the importance of doing so?
Stay involved and stay engaged! Try to meet monthly – even if it’s via Zoom. Your LC Classmates are your friends for life. Keep in touch with them and rely on each other. Get your class email list from Amanda Beights and use it!
How do you stay engaged with your class?
"The Silvers" (LC’14 – "the Class that Outshines the Best") truly are the BEST class! We’ve held monthly socials, consistently, for over six years now and have always had great turnout – some of us even take vacations together! I serve as our Class Champion so it’s truly important to me to keep our class connected. We hold a social on the third Thursday of each month. At the beginning of each year I send an email to our class with our social dates and then I ask if anyone would like to host a social in their home. For the past several years we’ve “booked” the entire year of socials within a week of me sending the email! I, of course, send reminders each month and get headcounts for the hosts, etc. It has been an easy and effective way to stay connected!