Forge, the Topeka and Shawnee County young professional’s organization, along with several other organizations is thrilled to forge ahead with their first ever Summer Internship Program. The program gathers over 200 interns from local Topeka and Shawnee County businesses, providing presenting them with the best internship experience possible while investing in their future as professionals. Their purpose is to provide a platform of connections for new up-and-coming young professionals. The ultimate goal is to impart a lasting impression of Topeka and Shawnee County on summer interns, maximizing attraction and retention of young professionals to the community.

Forge is an organization that amplifies Topeka and Shawnee County’s ability to recruit, retain and train young talent for the betterment of the community. By providing this Summer Internship Program, Forge continues in accomplishing this mission. Executive Director of Forge, Gabriel O’Shea spoke of the program. “The Summer Internship Program allows us to involve and embrace young talent in our community, paving a strong future of rising professional development within Topeka and Shawnee County.”

Forge is honored to introduce new up-and-coming young professionals to all that Topeka and Shawnee County can offer. In addition to the experiential growth provided by their respective businesses, interns will grow in leadership and community involvement. “This program gives our interns the chance to realize the possibilities that they have in the Topeka and Shawnee County community. This is a community where young people are empowered by our accessible leaders to influence the things that they are passionate about,” stated Sean Frost, Chair of Forge. “This program will allow interns to have the opportunity to see firsthand what exciting things are taking place in our community and how they can make a difference in our future.”

This internship program provides a variety of opportunities for interns to socialize with one another throughout the summer. A few of the events that further connect interns involve collective meals, leadership training, fun events and team building activities. Additionally, their end of summer bash celebrates everything that the interns have achieved within their respective businesses and the community within the Summer Internship Program.

Topeka and Shawnee County businesses are also receiving benefit from this program. As our community attracts and retains fantastic young talent, our businesses and community will continue to flourish. Keith Warta, President of Bartlett & West, one of the local businesses participating in the Internship Program, stated the importance of this program for a business’ standpoint. “Bartlett & West is focused on integrating our summer interns into the community and the Forge Summer Internship Program will help us do this. We are not only selling our company to interns but also selling our community.” By providing a well-rounded experience of what it is like to live, work and play in Topeka and Shawnee County, businesses can better develop their intern retention.

Other businesses that are participating in the Summer Internship Program are Capitol Federal, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Payless ShoeSource, SE2, Security Benefit, the Topeka Zoo and Westar Energy. If your business would like to join alongside them in providing this program opportunity to your summer 2017 interns, please contact Gabriel O’Shea at or 785.234.2644.