May 29 -
Aug 7, 2020

Flint Community Initiative Internship Program:

Leveraging community assets for Flint’s future

downtown Flint Michigan

Service Learning Opportunity in Flint

Minimum of $1000 scholarship is included!

The Flint Community Initiative prepares and invests MSU’s most vital resource -- the time, gifts and talents of students passionate to make a difference – to engage in meaningful work in nonprofit community organizations in Flint while providing our students with a unique opportunity develop skills in hands-on, collaborative community development projects.

The Context: Flint in the Aftermath of the Water Crisis

Flint Michigan farmer's market

Precipitated by cost-saving measures that led to the poisoning of the water supply, the Flint Water Crisis has served as a catalyst for community change during the past five years. Yet like many Rustbelt cities, the city had struggled with the effects of decades-long economic disinvestment prior to the crisis. The magnitude of the crisis, however, spurred a bottoms-up, collaborative approach to creating authentic community development as a path forward to enhance the health and well-being of the city and its residents.

Our Mission

The Flint Community Initiative began its internship program during the Summer of 2019. At the core of our mission is the belief that the key to revitalizing distressed areas is to look at neighborhoods and communities not for their deficits but for their assets. Our internship program pairs students and leaders of nonprofit community and civic organizations to engage in collaborative, community-driven projects that help to expand community assets and contribute to a thriving future for Flint residents.

Program Essentials

  • The program runs for 10 weeks during the summer plus one intensive weekend orientation (May 29 - August 7, 2020).
  • Faculty and staff work with community partners to place students.
  • Students will stay in University of Michigan-Flint housing at no charge to the student.
  • Students will receive a minimum of $1,000 scholarship to defray living, work, and transportation expenses.
  • Students take a 3 credit project-based skills course (SW 492 Flint Community Initiative: Asset-Based Approaches to Community Work), plus 3-6 internship credits. The 3+3 CR option is commensurate with a 30-32 hour work week.
  • Faculty leaders work with students and their community supervisors to achieve a common goal: the completion of one or more products from a high-impact project that build upon the ways our nonprofit agency partners utilize and leverage existing assets to address social, political, and economic priorities within the community.
  • During the internship, students will have opportunities to attend exciting cultural, professional, recreational, or social events around the city.
  • Open to advanced undergraduate and graduate students across every major and College.

Application and Contact Info

Complete the College of Social Science Study Away application. Select Flint Community Initiative at the summer semester programs dropdown menu. Please include a current résumé and a brief statement of interest describing reasons for applying to the program, career goals or specific interests, and internship preferences.

The Flint Community Initiative has no application fee and no program fee. Applications are due January 31, 2020.

To learn more about the program, contact: Monica Villarreal,

The program runs May 29th - August 7th.

Scholars Showcase Ceremony at the Applewood Estate from Summer 2019

Please visit our Scholars Showcase Ceremony event page to learn more about our student's experiences during the summer of 2019.