From SummerWorks internship to a career path

October 12, 2017

Zuriel Hammond was just looking for a bag for his county-issued laptop when he found his future.

Hammond, 18, was working as a summer intern for Multnomah County Commissioner Lori Stegmann, creating an inventory of affordable housing in east Multnomah County and helping around the office. He was curious about county departments, and particularly in information technology, Stegmann’s community relations and policy analyst Janet Quiroz recalls. “He had a lot of energy, a lot of interest,” she said. And he talked to everyone.

Commissioner Loretta Smith talks with intern Zuriel Hammond during a celebration of SummerWorks.

So when the fresh high school graduate wandered onto the fourth floor of the Multnomah Building in search of a lap top bag, he naturally began chatting with the man who held open the door. He was delighted to learn that man was Dennis Tomlin, the county’s director of cyber security.

“We started talking about what he wanted to do with his life and how he was interested in IT,” Tomlin said. “He said he had been really interested in cyber security.”

Tomlin invited Hammond to return to IT to shadow his team. He told him about a  scholarship that pays for students to earn a degree in cyber security in exchange for public service. Hammond was immediately hooked, but soon discovered the deadline had passed for the 2017 academic year.

He went back to Tomlin to ask: were there any paid internships?

“Let me check,” Tomlin said. He went to Deputy Chief Information Officer Bob Leek and asked if they could create a one-year paid cybersecurity internship for Hammond. “Great,” Leek said. “Get the job description written and we’ll make it happen.”

Hammond was one of more than 1,1000 students employed this year through SummerWorks, and one of 650 students sponsored by Multnomah County in its partnership with Worksystems. In it’s seventh year, the program employs high school and college students, 93 percent of whom are low-income and 76 percent of whom are youth of color.

“It’s so much more than a paycheck,” Worksystems Executive Director Andrew McGough said this week as student supervisors and program staff gathered to celebrate at the downtown Portland office of Bora Architects, one of more than 200 intern hosts. Among those gathered was Commissioner Loretta Smith, who launched the program at Multnomah County and has worked to sharply increase the number of positions the county sponsors each year.

“We could not have done this without a champion in elected office,” McGough said. “Commissioner Smith is a true advocate for young people in our community.”

Zuriel's parents William and Jeanna Hammond say they're proud of their son for stepping out of his comfort zone and creating opportunities.

Smith spearheaded the county’s involvement in 2011 with 25 positions, and has watched it grow 26-fold. She’s watched students go on to college, and into careers that wouldn’t have seemed like options without the networks created by SummerWorks. Smith, who is serving out her last full year on the Commission, said she feels she can leave knowing, “that there is a capable generation of dedicated workers taking over.”

As people gathered to talk, sip wine and nibble roasted vegetables and skewered meats, Hammond arrived, flanked by his parents William and Jeanna Hammond. He greeted Smith with a high five, then threw an arm around her shoulders.

His parents were not surprised at his outgoing gregariousness, they said. As the youngest of five, he watched four of his older siblings network with professionals and graduate from SummerWorks. Hammond himself had just completed his third SummerWorks internship.

“SummerWorks changed my life,” he said. “It’s an opportunity finder for young individuals, so they can find jobs where they will strive to be better, and jobs they enjoy. SummerWorks is a catalyst to find out what they can do. And be.”

Hammond moved with his family four years ago from Charlotte, N.C., where his mother, a substitute teacher, homeschooled him and his four older siblings. Once in Oregon he began attending public high school, and his mother urged him to sign up for a summer computer course. She wanted someone in the family to be able to fix the home computer and set up the internet, she said.

“I fought her,” he said. “I thought, ‘I’m not trying to be a nerd. That’s for techy people.’” He was surprised how much he enjoyed the course, and it helped at his first SummerWorks internship with Elemental Technologies, and his second internship with the web team at Portland Public Schools.

Zuriel Hammond and his new boss cyber security manager Dennis Tomlin ham it up on an afternoon in the county's IT department.

Hammond said he had planned to go to college this fall, but after shadowing with Tomlin’s team, he decided to apply for the cyber security scholarship and take a gap year to gain experience in the field. As a cyber security intern, Hammond does basic tasks, such as creating new user accounts and updating software, but Tomlin is pushing him too.

Hammond’s first assignment was to evaluate a technology the county is considering adopting to identify cyber threats and vulnerabilities. This week Hammond hosted a meeting for his team and presented a short list of vendors who he felt could deliver. “He did a great job,” Tomlin said. “He knocked it out of the park.”

 

2017 Partners who hired and mentored Summerworks interns

  • Adalente Mujeres
  • African Youth And Community Organization (ayco)
  • Also
  • Ben & Jerry's
  • Bernie's Southern Bistro
  • Big Elephant Kitchen
  • Bikes For Humanity
  • Biketown
  • Birch Community Services
  • Black United Front Fund Of Oregon
  • Boeing - Joint Programs/genesis Performance Systems
  • Bora
  • Boys And Girls Clubs Of Portland
  • Brothaman Tech Incubator
  • Bullivant Houser Bailey
  • Candy Babel
  • Carpe Mundi
  • Catholic Charities
  • Central City Concern
  • Centro Cultural De Washington County
  • Children Relief Nursery With Lifeworks Nw
  • City Of Beaverton
  • City Of Gresham  - Environmental Services
  • City Of Gresham - Facilities Maintenance
  • City Of Gresham - Fleet Services
  • City Of Gresham - Office Of Government
  • City Of Gresham - Parks Department
  • City Of Gresham - Technology Innovations
  • City Of Gresham - Urban Design And Planning
  • City Of Portland - Bureau Of Development Services
  • City Of Portland - Bureau Of Human Resources
  • City Of Portland - Bureau Of Planning And Sustainability
  • City Of Portland - Bureau of Technology Services
  • City of Portland - Bureau of Transportation
  • City Of Portland - Commissioner Amanda Fritz's Office
  • City Of Portland - Commissioner Chloe Eudaly's Office
  • City Of Portland - Commissioner Dan Saltzman
  • City Of Portland - Commissioner Nick Fish
  • City Of Portland - Fire & Rescue
  • City Of Portland - Office Of Equity And Human Rights
  • City Of Portland - Office Of Mayor Wheeler
  • City Of Portland - Omf
  • City Of Portland - Parks & Recreation
  • City Of Portland - Procurement Services
  • City Of Portland - Water Bureau
  • Columbia Slough Watershed Council
  • Community Cycling Center
  • Community Vision Inc
  • Cuervos Soccer Club
  • Dean's Car Care
  • Desi Pdx
  • Devils Den Wine Bar
  • Dress For Success
  • Ecumenical Ministries Of Oregon
  • Eden Acres
  • Elemental Technologies
  • Elite Plastics
  • Elks Lodge
  • Emmanuel Church
  • Epson Portland Inc.
  • Ethos Music Center
  • Food Works
  • Free Geek
  • Friends Of Baseball
  • Friends Of The Children
  • Friends Of Trees
  • Fulcrum Fitness
  • Gateway To College National Network
  • Gigi's Cafe
  • Glendoveer Golf & Tennis
  • Goin' Gaming
  • Ground Up Pdx
  • Habitat For Humanity
  • Hacienda Cdc
  • Hillsboro Hops
  • Holla Mentors
  • Hollywood Senior Center
  • Hollywood Theatre
  • Home Forward
  • Hsd - Wou Migrant Teacher Program
  • Hsd/Hillsboro P&R - Ccn
  • Impact Northwest
  • Irco
  • J. Gelati Italian Ice
  • Jamaican Homestyle Cuisine
  • Kairos Pdx
  • Kayos Ramen
  • KBOO
  • KGW
  • Know Your City
  • Lansu Chinese Garden
  • Lease Crutcher Lewis
  • Legacy Health
  • Life Change Church
  • Linnton Community Center
  • Loaves And Fishes
  • Mahlum Architects
  • Meals On Wheels
  • Meso (micro Enterprise Services Of Oregon) -
  • Metalwood Salvage
  • Metro Paint
  • Metropolitan Family Service
  • MHCC Yess Crew
  • Milagros Boutique
  • Mimosa Studios
  • Moorehouse Barbers
  • Morrison Family Services
  • Mother And Child Education Center
  • Multnomah County Animal Services
  • Multnomah County Department Of Community Justice
  • Multnomah County Department of County Assets
  • Multnomah County Department of County Human Services
  • Multnomah County District 1
  • Multnomah County District 2
  • Multnomah County District 3
  • Multnomah County District 4
  • Multnomah County Joint Office Of Homeless Services (a Home For Everyone)
  • Multnomah County Library
  • Multnomah County Office Of Communications
  • Multnomah County Office Of Emergency Management
  • Multnomah County Office Of Sustainability
  • Multnomah County Stryve
  • Multnomah County Sun Program
  • Multnomah County Youth Commission
  • Multnomah Couty District 4/office Of Lori Stegman
  • Nadaka Nature Park
  • Naya Family Services
  • Neba/greenlighting Black Lives Matter
  • Neighborhood House - Food Program
  • Nepo42
  • New Avenues For Youth
  • Nortek Air Solutions
  • Northwest Children's Theater And School
  • Northwest Health Foundation
  • Novitas Data
  • NW Natural
  • O'Neill Electric (pcdp)
  • Oh Planning + Design
  • Ohdc Supafresh Youth Farm
  • Ohsu Rehabilitation Services
  • Open Signal Community Media Center
  • Oregon College Of Oriental Medicine
  • Oregon Federal Executive Board
  • Oregon Opportunity Network
  • Our 42nd Avenue - Cully Farmers Market
  • Pacific Foods
  • Pacificmark Construction Corp.
  • Pai Tong Thai Cuisine
  • Parkrose Hardware
  • Peninsula Children's Learning Center - School Age Program (neighborhood House)
  • Pixie Project
  • Pizza Jerk
  • Planar
  • Poic
  • Pollo Norte
  • Portland Children's Museum
  • Portland Meet Portland
  • Portland Nursery
  • Portland Pickles
  • Portland Public Schools
  • Portland State University
  • Portlaundry
  • Professional Business Development Group
  • Project Lemonade
  • Providence Health Services
  • Ps Trucking Inc.
  • Radio Room
  • Radius Art Studio
  • Rebuilding Center
  • Reclaim It!
  • Refuge Vfx
  • Revolucion Coffee House
  • Rockwood Community Development Corporation Community Outreach
  • Safe Transportation
  • Saif Corporation
  • Salvation Army
  • Saturday Academy
  • Schoolhouse Supplies
  • Schoolyard Farms
  • Scrap
  • Se Works
  • Self Enhancement Inc
  • Shine Program - Impact Nw: William Walker Es
  • Shine Program-impact Nw Kinnaman Elementary
  • Sisters Of The Road
  • Stoopid Burger
  • Straightway Services:salvation Army Moore Street
  • Street Roots Vendor Program
  • Summit Golf Foundation
  • Sunshine Division
  • Sweet Jams
  • Tamale Boy
  • The Freshwater Trust
  • The Grotto
  • The Rosewood Initiative
  • Tosoh Quartz
  • Transactive Gender Center
  • Trimet
  • Tripwire Inc
  • Tualatin River Keepers
  • Tulip Tree Preschool
  • Unify Portland
  • Unite Oregon
  • United States Senate-office Of Ron Wyden
  • Unity Farms
  • Urban Excursions
  • Urban League Portland
  • Village Market
  • Virginia Woof Dog Daycare
  • Volunteers Of America Oregon
  • Washington County - Department Of Housing/maintenance
  • Washington County - Disability
  • Washington County - Facilities And Parks
  • Washington County - Fair Grounds
  • Washington County - Land Use & Transportation
  • Washington County - Support Services/sustainability
  • Washington County Bicycle Transportation Coalition
  • Washington County Museum
  • West Columbia Gorge Chamber Center
  • Whites Enterprise Inc. (food Cart Pod)
  • Wild Lilac Child Development Community
  • Willamette Valley Development Officers
  • Wisdom Of The Elders
  • Worksource
  • Ymca St. Anthony's Child Development Center
  • Youth And The Law Project