In 2016, the California Community College Chancellor’s Office funded the CCC Maker’s Initiative with a goal of closing California’s middle-skills gap and creating a college maker culture. The initiative will build a community of college makerspaces, fund 800 internships, and prepare students for success in STEM/STEAM careers.
CCSF is one of the community colleges participating in this initiative, and they have created a Maker Certificate curriculum and are building out three different Makerspace Hubs.

At SFMade, we believe that making and manufacturing are deeply connected and that it’s important to connect young adults in San Francisco to potential hands-on career paths, which is why, in 2017, we launched a pilot partnership with CCSF where we placed 5 of their students in internships with SFMade member businesses.

One of the host sites was Pagoda Arts, a custom laser cutting and engraving manufacturer. Pagoda Arts worked with CCSF to find an intern that could help them with production and client projects.

Some of Pagoda Arts’ products

Alex of Pagoda Arts found the program “really great” and found a perfect fit in William, who proved to be an intern able to take on increasingly difficult projects. Alex mentions that “the selection process was really great and the City College representative really listened to what my requirements were.” He feels the program could act as a pipeline for hiring “since in SF it’s really hard to find people [to hire].”
Pagoda Arts’ intern William was hired part-time after his internship, and is currently working there.

William, Pagoda Arts’ intern

We’re excited to continue our partnership with CCSF this year and to place 15 students in internships.
If you’re and SFMade member company and interested in participating, you can host an intern anytime between September 2018 and May 2019. The first 20 hours are free and you then have the option to hire the intern onto your payroll. Interns can help with a variety of projects including marketing, photography, operations, etc.

Please email Rima Vora – [email protected] – if you’re interested in participating or want more information.