Dr. Zehri, an internist, clinic owner, Chief of Staff for WARMC, and longtime resident of Bullhead City, started Tri-State Youth Internship & Leadership in 2018. Tri-State Youth Internship & Leadership (TSY) gives young adults ages 16-25 the opportunity to experience their career field of interest through a six-week paid internship program from June 1 – July 15, with the opportunity for school credit. Dr. Zehri’s vision for TSY was to give young adults in rural areas actual work experience before spending thousands of dollars on a general college degree program. Tri-State Youth’s Board, Dr. Zehri, Gina Covert, Emily Stevens, Dr. Carolyn Hamblin, Devin Porter and Bullhead City Mayor Tom Brady, along with Associate Members and local businesses, rallied around the youth. During the first year, 25 students graduated from the program. Several students who graduated from the program are still working for the business they interned for, and some students changed their career path to the type of business they interned for.
During the month of October, Dr. Zehri, Gina Covert, and Associate Member Anne Marie Ward have made it their mission to grow the program in Bullhead City and to Lake Havasu City and Kingman.
On Tuesday, October 8, 2019, Anne Marie Ward gave a presentation about TSY to the Kingman School Board and during the day, TSY members met with the hospital and local businesses. By the end of the day, over 10 internship opportunities in Kingman confirmed. Mayor Jen Miles is excited to see Tri-State Youth come to Kingman.
On Wednesday, October 9, Anne Marie Ward talked to every high school senior in Bullhead City at the College and Career Expo headed by Gina Covert in Bullhead City. She discussed the incredible opportunities with TSY and taught students about the importance of leadership, planning and networking.
On Monday, October 28, Dr. Zehri and Anne Marie Ward met with Lake Havasu Unified School District Superintendent Diana M. Asseier and Marsha Becker, CTE Coordinator, and will be presenting to the Governing Board in the near future. The school district is excited to have the opportunity to collaborate with Tri-State Youth, as is Mayor Cal Sheehy. During the remainder of the day, TSY spent time with local business owners and have over 10 commitments from Lake Havasu businesses to take an intern during the summer of 2020.
On October 29, 2019 Dr. Zehri, Dr. Carolyn Hamblin, Mayor Tom Brady, and Anne Marie Ward attended the Achieve60AZ hosted by Mohave Community College. As they discussed with attending city mayors, leadership, educators, and business owners the goals of Achieve60AZ, the vital nature of internship opportunities like TSY came to the forefront. Too many college graduates are not using their degrees and are overwhelmed by debt.
Having an internship opportunity helps students and young adults experience a career field before committing to years in a degree field or taking on tons of debt. Local internship programs also help companies find great local talent and keep our kids in our communities growing our city legacies.
The central goal of TSY is for the community to help the community. Thus, the organization is a 501c3 with zero government funding. The businesses pay the interns and board members and associate members volunteer their time to provide career preparation and basic leadership training for interns. They also work to bring new businesses on board and to recruit volunteers to join TSY as Associate Members to help with community outreach and the internship placement process.
TSY is hoping to offer 80 internship opportunities in Bullhead City this year for their second year of the program, and over 20 in both Kingman and Lake Havasu City for their first year of the program. TSY hopes to grow the program to other rural communities. If you have a business or know a business owner interested in hosting an intern in 2020, if you can donate financially to help offset print and facilitation costs, or if you know a young adult who would like the opportunity to be an intern or if you would like to join TSY as an Associate Member and volunteer your time, call Dr. Zehri at 928-234-3422, visit the website at www.tsyil.org or follow on Facebook.