Employment and Training
STEP-UP is the City of Minneapolis internship program for young adults ages 14-21. Each year, STEP-UP recruits, trains and places more than 1,600 Minneapolis youth in meaningful paid internships with over 220 top Twin Cities businesses, public agencies and nonprofits.
The STEP-UP application period for 2018 is now closed. Applicants will receive an email and paper notification the week of February 26th. The application for summer 2019 will be available in December.
Become a STEP-UP Intern
How to apply to STEP-UP
The STEP-UP application for summer 2018 will be available on December 11th through February 16, 2018.
1. To be eligible you must:
Your Family’s income should be at or below these levels. This is a guideline only. If you aren’t sure if you qualify, please apply!
2. Gather this information for your STEP-UP application:
For program information and updates, like the STEP-UP Facebook page!
Need help? Computers, web access and help with your application are available at:
After you apply:
2018 Program Timeline and Information
STEP-UP Program Timeline
• December 11, 2017 – Online application available for youth to apply for STEP-UP
• February 16, 2018 – Youth application closed, last day to apply for STEP-UP
• The week of February 26, 2018 – Notification emails and letters are sent to youth
• March/April 2018 – Work Readiness Training. All trainings are at MCTC, 1501 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403.
• June 18, 2018 – first day of work for most interns
• August 17, 2018 – last day of work for most interns
STEP-UP Intern Benefits
Become a STEP-UP Employer
Interested in Becoming a STEP-UP Employer?
To pledge to hire STEP-UP interns for summer 2018.
Entry-level internships for youth with limited work experience designed to develop skills and explore interests in preparation for more challenging opportunities, including STEP-UP Achieve. Youth, generally are ages 14-15 and work in nonprofit organizations. This program is directed by the City of Minneapolis. To host a STEP-UP Discover intern at your agency (with wages paid by STEP-UP), please contact Nina Robertson at 612-673-5118.
Career-oriented internships for older STEP-UP interns who are seeking a professional experience and more challenging opportunities. Youth, ages 16-21, work in private sector businesses, public agencies and nonprofits. The program is directed by AchieveMpls. To hire a STEP-UP Achieve intern at your business, please contact Matt Norris at 612-455-1565.
Concentrated work and training opportunities in a specific trade or industry in a cohort model. Generally, youth are age’s 14-21.This program also provides supported training and work experiences for youth with disabilities. This program is directed by the City of Minneapolis. Contact Anna Peterson at 612-673-5234 for more information.
How Community and School Leaders Can Support Their Youth
Materials for STEP-UP Supervisors
The following is a list of forms that are available for download. You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view and print them.
Forms to be Copied
- Intern Performance Improvement Plan (PDF)
- Daily Sign-in Sheet (PDF)
- Direct Deposit Form (PDF)
- Emergency Contact Form (PDF)
- First Report of Injury (PDF)
- Outstanding Performance Notice (PDF)
STEP-UP is the City of Minneapolis internship program for young adults ages 14-21. Each year, STEP-UP recruits, trains and places more than 1,600 Minneapolis youth in meaningful paid internships with over 220 top Twin Cities businesses, public agencies and nonprofits. As one of the country's premiere youth employment programs, STEP-UP serves youth who face some of the greatest barriers to employment, particularly youth from low income families, youth of color, youth from immigrant families, and youth with disabilities. Since our inception in 2004, STEP-UP has created nearly 24,000 meaningful internships for youth, helping young people to gain 21st century skills, build professional connections, explore career interests, and begin the path to educational and career success. Youth complete a competitive application process and work readiness training to be considered for a position with one of over 230 participating businesses in both public and private sector. The City of Minneapolis STEP-UP is a program in partnership with AchieveMpls, Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), Minneapolis Park and Recreation and Project for Pride in Living.
Program Leadership and Partners
Betsy Hodges, Mayor of Minneapolis
Mayor Hodges leads the charge to address the achievement gap that exists for youth of color in Minneapolis and recognizes STEP-UP as a key strategy in that work. She proposed additional funding for STEP-UP in the 2016 city budget and is behind the initiative to replicate STEP-UP in other communities around Minnesota.
R.T. Rybak, CEO and President of The Minneapolis Foundation
In his position as founder and co-chair, R.T. Rybak continues to champion the effort to inform businesses of the value of hiring motivated, diverse, and talented STEP-UP interns.
Richard Davis- Chairman and CEO of U.S. Bancorp
Richard Davis co-chairs STEP-UP with R.T. Rybak. He has been involved in the program since its inception in 2004, providing guidance and support for the program in addition to hiring as many as 30 interns each summer.
Partnership is critical to the success of STEP-UP. City of Minneapolis Employment and Training partners with the following organizations to operate STEP-UP:
AchieveMpls leads STEP-UP Achieve, the private sector component of STEP-UP. The STEP-UP Achieve team recruits employers, prepares applicants for a successful internship, and supports employers and interns throughout the summer. In addition, AchieveMpls is responsible for youth recruitment in the schools, work readiness training for approximately 3,000 youth, and the establishment and maintenance of the STEP-UP alumni network.
Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board operates the classroom training for STEP-UP Discover interns. Each intern participates in a three hour weekly class and has the opportunity to earn high school credit. Classes focus on making the connection between academics and work and include math, English, STEM and life skills curricula.
Minnesota Workforce Centers (part of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development) manage many aspects of the STEP-UP Discover and STEP-UP Explore components including interviewing and matching youth with internships at participating non-profit businesses. The Workforce Center team also supports and monitors the employers and interns throughout the summer experience.
Project for Pride in Living (PPL) provides work readiness training for STEP-UP Discover interns, preparing youth for their summer work experience with 12 hours of classroom training. In addition, PPL offers a specialized healthcare training for STEP-UP Achieve interns who are matched with positions in healthcare.
For youth 16-21 years old, Achieve offer career-oriented internships for interns who are seeking a professional experience and more challenging opportunities. Youth work in private sector businesses, public agencies and nonprofits. The program is directed by AchieveMpls.
For youth 14 or15 years old, Discover offers entry-level internships for youth with limited work experience designed to develop skills and explore interests in preparation for more challenging opportunities, including STEP-UP Achieve. Youth work in nonprofit organizations. This program is directed by the City of Minneapolis.
For youth 14-21 years old, Explore offers concentrated work and training opportunities in a specific trade or industry in a cohort model. This program also provides supported training and work experiences for youth with disabilities. This program is directed by the City of Minneapolis.
Last updated Jul 2, 2018