CONTACT: Shawn Uhlman, Prosper Portland, 503-823-7994

Applications open Monday, December 3 for Prosper Portland’s first Small Business Internship Grants, available for up to 12 eligible small businesses in the Portland metro area.

The grant funds will broaden learning opportunities for students of color and help local businesses gain unique insights as they diversify their talent pipelines.

Prosper Portland is partnering with the Emerging Leaders Internship program (ELI) to offer the grants, which will cover part of the match fee and up to 80 percent of an intern’s salary for a 10-week placement. Amounts will vary based on the company’s size and financial capacity.

Prosper Portland Executive Director Kimberly Branam said, “We are so pleased to embark on this joint venture with Emerging Leaders to expand the program to small, growing businesses that might not otherwise be able to finance an intern. We are helping small businesses grow and meet their strategic needs and at the same time offer students of color meaningful professional development.”

Eligible businesses must be in the Portland region, have fewer than 50 employees, and be new to the Emerging Leaders Internship initiative. They must also be traded sector companies, selling some of their products and/or services to people and businesses outside the Portland area.  Minority-owned, women-owned and emerging small businesses, businesses with people of color in executive and/or board leadership, and those in the city’s targeted traded sectors (Athletic and Outdoor, Clean Tech, Advanced Manufacturing, and Technology/Media) will receive priority.

Applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Monday, December 31. Recipients will be announced in February 2019.

Testimonials from previous program participants include:
“The wonderful student we were matched with brought great new insight to our work to change the banking industry for social and environmental impact. Participating with ELI helped us reach students who might not have been initially drawn to our triple bottom line banking mission, but whose voice and perspective are critical to our work.” – Kate Rood, Beneficial State Bank and Foundation

“This program has changed the way I viewed myself as an aspiring business professional in the best way possible. I am now way more confident and ready to begin my professional career thanks to ELI!” -Melanie, 2018 Friends of the Children intern

About Us
Prosper Portland creates economic growth and opportunity for Portland. Our vision is to make Portland one of the most globally competitive, healthy, and equitable cities in the world by investing in job creation, encouraging broad economic prosperity, and fostering great places throughout the city. We aspire to be a workplace of choice with passionate staff excelling in an open and empowering environment and sharing a commitment to our collective success.