YouthForce Intern Hired at True North

Posted on: July 18, 2018


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  • Smilow Rainier Vista
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Longtime YouthForce Intern, Vanessa, Hired as Marketing Intern at True North



True North is tucked away behind the main drag of Columbia City; if you didn’t know it was there, you wouldn’t see it. On this beautiful Tuesday, the doors were open and the warehouse was quiet.

The offices are located up the stairs and are clad with cozy details like hanging green plants and colorful prints on the walls. Vanessa, a recently graduated senior and longtime intern with YouthForce, has her own cubicle located next to her managers, Jacki and Melanie. The three of them make up the marketing team.

Vanessa started her internship with True North — a Seattle-based company specializing in making gear for firefighters  — through our Doorways programming in the spring. The internship was set to be six weeks, but midway through completion, Jacki and Melanie asked Vanessa if she would be interested in staying on with them after her program with us ended — she gladly accepted.

Vanessa speaks enthusiastically about her responsibilities and the projects she’s entrusted with: “Jacki and Melanie really put thought and effort into giving me feedback and challenging me in my work.”



“Jacki and Melanie really put thought and effort into giving me feedback and challenging me in my work.”


For Vanessa, this internship has opened the door for different career possibilities: “I like marketing a lot. I wasn’t sure it was something I’d want to do forever, but now I’m thinking of studying marketing and sales. I was debating going pre-med, but now I’m looking at the Foster School of Business, with a possible double major in Marketing and Public Health.”



Vanessa received a full ride to the University of Washington and is already taking advantage of the resources available to her by getting involved with the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity, a program that works to increase diversity on campus. She lists off several other organizations and programs she’s interested in, making it clear that her endeavors at school will be as rich and diverse as her experiences at YouthForce.


“I just love YouthForce. Without them, I wouldn’t have been exposed to all these internship opportunities.”


Vanessa reflects on her involvement with YouthForce, going into detail about all the experience she’s gained in a short time. Since January 2017, Vanessa has interned with the TeamWork Internship Program as a Sounders Intern and as a Seahawks Intern. She accepted an internship with Molly Moon’s last summer, and came back to the Sounders this winter, this time as a Lead Intern. She fulfills this role in addition to her position with True North, all as she prepares to attend her first year at UW in September.

“The staff at YouthForce have been huge in helping me with my resume and cover letter, and my interviewing skills. I just love YouthForce. Without them, I wouldn’t have been exposed to all these career opportunities.”

Earlier this month, Vanessa stopped by the YouthForce offices to invite the staff to her sister’s quinceañera. When she met one of our newer staff members, she extended the invitation and exclaimed, “You’re a part of the YouthForce team, so you’re family.”


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