When faced with a strategic imperative to develop science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) talent for a new generation in a technical field combined with a social commitment to improve diversity in our workforce, United Water developed a partnership 5 years ago with the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) to create a highly competitive paid internship program.
The program provides students with a 10-week paid internship in one of United Water’s facilities, along with a scholarship funded by the United Water Foundation. Each student can be awarded up to $10,000 in scholarship money over a two-year period. The program offers students a chance to develop invaluable business skills through workshops and work experience. Each intern is assigned a United Water employee as a mentor.
This year’s UNCF Corporate Scholars are an impressive group of students. The United Water Blog interviewed them to learn more about what it takes to be a Corporate Scholar.
Erick Quinteros; Bethlehem, PA
A native of Bethlehem, PA, Erick studies Civil Engineering at Columbia University, while also finding time to complete a minor in Architecture. He interned last summer at United Water’s Oradell operation, working primarily within the GIS department. Fluent in Spanish, Erick spends his free time leading Spanish worship services at Pocono Community Church and coordinating events for Columbia’s Faith and Action group. He is an avid musician who focuses primarily on the piano, but also plays the bass guitar, drums and trombone. Erick expects to graduate in the spring of 2015.
Jeneissa Booker; Teaneck, NJ
Jeneissa grew up in Teaneck, NJ and now studies in the College of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University. She is a Criminal Justice major and is pursuing a minor in Africana Studies. Last summer, she worked as a sales associate with New York and Company, and is involved in such on-campus activities as Chaos Dance Theory, Habitat for Humanity and the Rutgers Black Student Union. Jeneissa’s primary career aspiration is to help underprivileged children find opportunities that they would otherwise not have had.
Michelle DePinho; New City, NY
A New City, NY native, Michelle attends Manhattan College, where she is pursuing a degree in Civil Engineering with a minor in Sociology. She was awarded the Charles Thornton Scholar of the Year Award for the 2016 Class of Engineers. She has maintained involvement in organizations such as the Society of Women Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers and the New York Water Environment Association. Michelle also works as a News Editor for her college newspaper, The Quadrangle, and as a freelance writer for the Riverdale Review. Last summer, she worked as a counselor for the MC Summer Engineering Program for Women and Minorities. She is proficient in Spanish and likes to spend her free time drawing or painting. Her career aspirations include becoming an environmental engineer and possibly pursuing environmental law.
Ebonee Johnson; East Orange, NJ
Ebonee grew up in East Orange, NJ and studies in the College of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University. She is pursuing a degree in Mathematics with a minor in General Anthropology. She has experience working at the Cook Campus Café at Rutgers, handling the finances and working on the food services side. She serves as an event coordinator for the Chaos Dance Theory group. In her free time, she likes to draw and listen to music. Her career aspirations involve working in Actuarial Science or finance.
Emma Missey; Hackensack, NJ
A student of the University of Maryland, Emma is a Communication Studies Major and expects to graduate in December 2014. She interned last summer in United Water’s Corporate Communications department. At school, she works as a promotions director for Colleges Against Cancer and a recruitment chair for Alpha Delta Pi sorority. An avid Mets fan, Emma likes to watch baseball, go on runs and snowboard in her free time. She is interested in many fields and could see herself pursuing a career in corporate communications, non-profits, Human Resources or event planning.
Emeka Madubuogo; Freeport, Long Island, NY
Emeka currently studies at Fairleigh Dickinson University but is transferring to Rutgers University in Fall 2014. He is pursuing a double major in Political Science and History, with a minor in Legal Studies. He is a frequent volunteer at the Paterson, NJ YMCA and an Omega Psi Phi fraternity member. In his free time, he likes poetry, singing and playing chess. He aspires to be an attorney with his own practice.
Shawn Williams; Pennsauken, NJ
Shawn attends Rowan University and studies Civil and Environmental Engineering. Last summer, he interned at United Water’s Camden, NJ operation. He hopes to attain industry-related certifications in the near future to secure a job in water treatment or water resources upon graduation. In his free time, he likes to play basketball and poker.
Whitney Turner; Indianapolis, IN
A native of Indianapolis, Whitney graduated from Pike High School in 2011 and now attends Hampton University in Virginia, where she studies Marketing with a dual minor in Sociology and Leadership Studies. She enjoys communications and public relations but also has career aspirations to become an attorney. She looks forward to becoming a dynamic career woman during her time at United Water.