An effort by Indianapolis’ top companies to encourage more college graduates to stay in Indy seems to be paying off. Organizers say nearly 40% of interns who participated in Indyfluence last summer chose to start their careers in Indianapolis, despite many of them not having lived or worked in the city previously.
Roche Diagnostics Head of People and Culture Bridget Boyle says the Indyfluence program is designed to immerse students in Indianapolis through community service, networking, and financial education.
Boyle discussed the program’s success in an interview on Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick.
“It was a very compelling program and in a year where many companies and states were just completely eliminating internship programs, not only did we honor our commitment to these students, but we also said, ‘How do we take it up and level and how do we raise the number of people that we can reach?'” said Boyle. “Forty percent of those 500 accepted full-time offers and so we know that we’re going to continue to grow this number year-over-year.”
The Indyfluence program launched in 2019. Boyle says a key component of the program is getting interns involved with local nonprofits.
“They are not only giving back to the city by helping clean up parks and donating their time and energy to efforts that are important to the city, but they’re getting to learn about nonprofits and charitable giving opportunities,” she said. “They also get to vote [on] where we are able to make a $14,000 contribution…and in this case, what was chosen was [a nonprofit] helping establish refugees in Indianapolis.”
Last year’s Indyfluence cohort included 500 interns, a number that has increased to more than 600 this year. Boyle says she hopes to double that number in the future, and she is also seeing increased interest from businesses.
“We already have companies who’ve never participated and they’re reaching out to us saying, ‘How do I get involved in this?'”