Tyson Foods 2019 Summer Community Internship Program

October 1, 2019


Over this past summer, Campus Compact Illinois gathered our Tyson Foods Summer Community interns and their supervisors to recap on their summers and all the work they accomplished. At the closing event, each of the interns explained their main duties and told us a little bit about what they learned from their site. Throughout the summer, we asked the interns to share information and photos about their days working at community organizations across the Chicagoland area. These photos showcased events and activities that the interns participated in. From these posts, we learned a lot about what their days looked like.


Abigail Salts spent the summer at the Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry (AAIFP) where she helped fundraise much-needed funds for her organization through their Radiothon. These donations made it so the AAIFP could provide quality food to needy families.

Emily Dehr worked at St Leonards Ministries where she worked closely with previously incarcerated individuals. Emily was excited to share the amazing impact Saint Leonards has had and all that she has learned from both the organization and the people that they work with. The state of Illinois has a recidivism rate of 50% for men and 35% for women. Saint Leonards Ministries reduces these rates to 16% for men and 5% for women by offering their clients education opportunities, residential facilities, and employment readiness training. During the summer, Emily interviewed the men and women at Saint Leonard’s so that these hopeful and significant stories can be shared throughout the community, performed many clerical duties for the development team and she still found the time to support resident needs as a tutor in computer skills, resume writing, and job application support.


Kailyn Robert worked at Chicago World Relief, where her role was to further expand the reach of her organization’s employment program and to utilize her Spanish speaking abilities to spearhead efforts to connect refugees and asylees residing south of the city to job connections. She also assisted in the design of the new Youth Mentoring program, a program that began this month that seeks to connect refugees, ages 18-25, with career coaches that can assist young adults in choosing a career path moving forward. Throughout the summer, Kailyn also assisted clients by providing transportation, as she drove immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers to job opportunities. When  writing  about  her  experience  on  social  media,  Kailyn, “…was excited to get to spend my summer in Chicago helping an organization that does so many great things for a traditionally under-served refugee population, which is something I’ve been passionate about for years.”

At The Talking Farm, Dan Saavedra experienced all the tasks associated with the daily operations of a diversified production vegetable farm. Dan explained that not only did he learn how the farm worked, he realized that the farming experience had allowed him to slow down and step away from the life that comes with the city of Chicago: fast-paced filled with technology and social interactions.

Emily Herkes’ focus was also about sustainable food systems, as she worked at Northern Illinois University’s CommUniversity Gardens. Here, she helped fight food insecurity in the NIU community by taking care of the garden and she also helped out with the Huskie Food Pantry by harvesting vegetables.

Scott Williams worked at Seven Generations Ahead, an organization with a similar goal of ecological sustainability and healthy communities. He helped achieve this goal by promoting the Illinois Frm to School network and helped with the organization’s Great Apple Crunch and Harvest of the Month sign-ups. Scott also helped integrate local grocery stores that provide compost services into the program We Compost, which is a recognition program that promotes businesses and institutions that participate in commercial composting.

Ravion Clay, a returning Tyson intern, worked at the Illinois Hunger Coalition. They mainly answered SFSP Hunger Hotline calls to connect families and children to SFSP sites close to them.

Campus Compact Illinois is incredibly grateful to Tyson Foods for sponsoring this internship program. We also recognize that this summer would not have been successful without the hard work of our interns and supervisors. These organizations work hard every day to make for a better Chicagoland!

To see more of the other interns’ summer experiences, check out the hashtag #TysonCommunities on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to see all the awesome posts they shared!