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One of hundreds of introductions made during the fall 2012 Career Fair on the Fox, hosted by UW Oshkosh Career Services.

Students at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh will benefit from a $150,000 Career Ready Internship Initiative grant from the Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation. The grant, deployed by UW Oshkosh Career Services, will help students by offering them opportunities to gain invaluable, real-world experience through paid internships in their fields of study.

UW Oshkosh will use the grant to create new paid internships and turn previously unpaid internships into paid internships, for juniors and seniors who don’t receive enough financial aid to cover college costs.

“This grant will serve as a tremendous boost for students who are eager to find that all-important internship and gain on-the-job experience that is so essential to today’s college experience,” said Jaime Page-Stadler, director of UW Oshkosh Career Services. “We look forward to the many incredible and career-enhancing opportunities it will provide students in 2014 and beyond.”

UW Oshkosh is one of 19 Wisconsin colleges and universities to receive some of the more than $2.5 million in Career Ready Internship Initiative grant funds awarded by Great Lakes. Schools will collaborate with businesses and nonprofit organizations across the state to create the new paid internships. The grant-funded internships will be made available to students who don’t receive enough financial aid to cover their college costs.

“Research shows that college students who gain experience through a paid internship are 67 percent more likely to receive at least one job offer after college than peers without internships,” said Richard D. George, Great Lakes’ President and Chief Executive Officer. “The Career Ready Internship Initiative will give nearly 1,300 Wisconsin college juniors and seniors the chance to benefit from paid internships in their fields of study—and a better chance at competing with wealthier peers after graduation.”

About Great Lakes and Community Investments

Knowing that education has the power to change lives for the better, Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates helps millions of students pay for college and repay their student loans. Through Community Investments, Great Lakes leads initiatives and funds programs that help students from traditionally underserved backgrounds start and complete a two- or four-year degree or other credential. Since 2006, Great Lakes has committed more than $90 million in funding to programs that share these goals. For additional information, visit mygreatlakes.org/community.