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Thanks to a $1.3 million grant from the New Mexico Public Education Department, Doña Ana County will hire 620 students from high schools in the Las Cruces, Gadsden and Hatch school districts to work in a variety of jobs throughout the county during a six-week summer internship program.
County Manager Fernando Macias introduced some of the new interns to county commissioners at their June 22 meeting at the county building.
Macias said the students will be working “throughout the community and throughout the county,” for school districts, the City of Las Cruces, New Mexico State University, Doña Ana Community College, Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine, Memorial Medical Center and other public entities, along with private businesses and nonprofits.
“We have hired the equivalent of half of our workforce in the last week,” Macias said. “The effort to do that was enormous.”
Macias said the program so far has hired 340 students from Las Cruces Public Schools, 68 from the Gadsden Independent School District, 14 from Hatch Valley Public Schools and 29 from charter schools.
County Commission Chair Manuel Sanchez welcomed the interns at the June 23 commission meeting.
“The way the staff has been able to quickly turn this around is amazing,” Sanchez said. “It’s amazing to see the outreach we’ve received from the communities.”