Wagner College’s Nicolais School of Business has been awarded a $25,000 grant by the KPMG U.S. Foundation to fund a short-term internship program for first-generation and underrepresented students.
The grant is part of the inaugural year of the KPMG Foundation’s Reaching New Heights program, which hopes to promote access and equity in higher education, increase awareness of pipeline diversity at institutions and create opportunities for collaboration between KPMG professionals and educators within our communities.
Anita Whitehead, chair of the KPMG U.S. Foundation, explained that the program “aligns with our firm’s commitment to advancing equity in both our workplace and society by providing enhanced access to meaningful opportunities to help develop a more diverse workforce for the future.”
A Wagner alumnus let the college know about the Reaching New Heights program’s request for proposals. Aarti Ivanic, dean of the Nicolais School of Business, then contacted KPMG’s grant officers, who encouraged her to apply.
The project Dean Ivanic submitted to KPMG is a short-term, three-week internship — a micro-internship — with local businesses or nonprofits to develop 10 to 15 students’ career and business skills, strengthen interpersonal communication and facilitate work experience. The project targets sophomore and junior business students who are traditionally underrepresented in spheres of business and higher education, including but not limited to women, first-generation college students, and members of racial and ethnic minorities.
Working with Wagner’s chief of staff, Mark Harmon-Vaught, Ivanic will recruit partners for the internships in the Staten Island business and nonprofit community. The Wagner students selected for the program will participate in their internships next summer. Afterward, the program will continue to support the micro-internship partners and add new businesses and nonprofits to the program, especially in underserved neighborhoods on Staten Island’s North Shore, where Wagner College’s campus is located.
“I am grateful to the KPMG Foundation for selecting us for this grant,” said Dean Ivanic. “The grant will help us meaningfully infuse diversity and inclusion practices in the Nicolais School of Business and will allow us to provide opportunities to ensure that students from underrepresented communities thrive in the professional world.”
For more information about the Nicolais School of Business’s micro-internship program, contact Dean Aarti Ivanic at email@example.com.
Wagner College, founded in 1883, is located on Grymes Hill in the New York City borough of Staten Island. The school’s signature curriculum, the Wagner Plan, unites deep learning and practical application, combining the college’s geographical location with its longstanding commitment to both the liberal arts and professional education. The college has about 1,600 undergraduate students and 350 graduate students enrolled. For more about Wagner College, go to wagner.edu.