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From left: Dr. Patricia Hernandez, Dr. Mary Ann Pearson, both of CBU’s Online and Professional Division, and Kris Whitehead, Riverside Downtown Partnership board of directors chair and owner of Curves on Main Street. Robbie Silver, of the Riverside Downtown Partnership, is speaking into the microphone.
From left: Dr. Patricia Hernandez, Dr. Mary Ann Pearson, both of CBU’s Online and Professional Division, and Kris Whitehead, Riverside Downtown Partnership board of directors chair and owner of Curves on Main Street. Robbie Silver, of the Riverside Downtown Partnership, is speaking into the microphone.
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Riverside mayor recognizes CBU internship program

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (May 22, 2014)--Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey recognized the Downtown Intern Program as a Riverside Pride Mayoral Success Story in a city hall ceremony May 20. The Downtown Intern Program is a joint program between California Baptist University and the Riverside Downtown Partnership.

The Downtown Intern Program came out of a social media seminar that the partnership held in October 2013 for downtown businesses. The seminar was presented by Dr. Mary Ann Pearson, associate professor of public relations, and Dr. Patricia Hernandez, assistant professor of communication studies, both of CBU’s Online and Professional Division. Many of the downtown businesses attending indicated that having interns assist with social media efforts would be helpful. Robbie Silver (’13), communications and events liaison for the Riverside Downtown Partnership, Pearson and Hernandez interviewed students for the program.

Once students were accepted, their skills and personality were matched with the needs of specific downtown business to assist with social media, event planning, networking and communication campaigns.

The participating businesses consisted of service, non-profit, government, business associations, retail/fashion and hospitality.

The program provides the businesses with the help they need and the students with experience, recommendations and networking opportunities, Pearson said. She said the program also provides internships and mentoring, which students need.

The program also is important for the city.

“Keeping college graduates in Riverside after graduation has always been part of my vision and the hope of our city,” Bailey said. “This internship program leads the way in connecting our local university students to the right place where they can grow in their chosen career path. I commend the RDP for their plan and partnership with CBU. I hope we can use this pilot program to inspire more collaboration and placement of talent here in Riverside.”