The IIC began in 2007 as an outgrowth of, a then newly established, Outdoor Recreation Parks and Tourism degree at SUU. Students majoring in this program needed an internship to fulfill the degree requirements. Simultaneously, several regional land management agencies were endeavoring to strengthen their relationship with SUU, which included an increased emphasis on student hiring programs.
Partnering with these agencies, supported by an initial cost share of $25,000, the IIC assisted in the placement of 15 interns and practicum students in its first year. Impressed with the quality of SUU’s students and recognizing that the IIC format would be beneficial for all agency program areas, beyond recreation, the partners transformed the IIC from a single program emphasis to an enlarged multi-program emphasis, placing interns in degree-related professional fields in everything from “Accounting to Zoology.”
Today the IIC places, or directly funds, approximately 200 interns in positions that support each partner’s respective program areas,. In addition, the IIC also endeavors to support and partner with several of the region’s Youth Camps, reaching an additional 400+ pre-collegiate youth.