Employment Immersion Graduate Scores Coveted Paid Internship

No stranger to Employment Immersion News, Vanessa Braasch embodies the “can do” spirit. Immediately following her participation in the March 2014 Employment Immersion Program, Vanessa secured a position with fashion retailer Uniqlo. It was not her ultimate career job choice, but it allowed her to have an income while seeking a position more closely aligned to her education and goals. When Employment Immersion Program Leader Kate Williams called with news about a one-year, paid Human Resources internship with the City and County of San Francisco, Vanessa thought it would be a great opportunity to put her BA in psychology to work and applied.

“It was a very competitive application process that included a 3-hour written aptitude exam; a group leadership problem solving competition; and two intensive panel interviews. I scored 40 out of 41 on the aptitude test, so I was hopeful, but when I did not hear any news right away, I thought I did not get the position. But they called a week later and offered me the internship. It sounds very exciting. I will be learning their software system and rotating through different positions – employee relations, working with unions, etc. – in order to learn all about HR. I am so excited to have the opportunity to keep striving, learning and growing, and it’s a generously paid internship that allows me to get off Social Security. They have been wonderful about working with me to provide accommodations as well.”

Earlier this year Vanessa said about our program, “I highly recommend the Employment Immersion class. You get a lot of information you would have trouble finding for yourself, such as how working affects your benefits. And the program taught me about some of the little things that can be really helpful to getting a job, like asking for the interviewer’s business card at the end of the interview so that you’ll have their contact information and can quickly send a thank you note. The lectures are not boring and it’s a fun environment.”

Vanessa will be eligible to apply for a permanent Personnel Analyst Trainee position in the civil service system after the successful completion of the structured intern program. Kate Williams notes, “I knew Vanessa was working the ‘night shift’ at Uniqlo. I thought her determination and desire to start a professional career might pay off – and it has. She has earned a highly coveted HR Analyst Internship with the City and County of San Francisco. We are so proud of her amazing accomplishment.”


For more information about our Employment Immersion Program, please contact Kate Williams at kwilliams@lighthouse-sf.org or 415-694-324.

Vanessa Braasch