Each summer SHECP’s flagship national internship program sends over 100 students from its member schools to work with nonprofit and government agencies addressing poverty across the country.
Middlebury College is one of over twenty member institutions of the Shepherd Higher Education Consortium on Poverty (SHECP), a nonprofit organization dedicated to the proliferation of poverty studies programs at colleges and universities in the U.S.
Middlebury regularly sends 5-7 students to participate in this summer program.
The Consortium’s internship program includes eight weeks of summer fieldwork bookended by opening and closing conferences, during which student interns come together with peers from other schools (and with faculty and staff) to critically reflect on their experiences. The closing conference also includes an annual symposium on a topic important to understanding poverty; past symposia have focused on issues like incarceration, childhood literacy, and nutrition.
The Consortium offers other benefits to its member institutions, including the following examples:
- Continuing education workshops for faculty and staff.
- Mechanisms for assessment and improvement of local curricular programs.
- A website for sharing relevant news and information between member institutions.
- A network for sharing the important work being done in poverty studies by staff, faculty, and students at SHECP schools.