SFCC announces launch of paid internship program PILAS (Programa de Internos, Los Alamos)

Santa Fe Community College announces the launch of the PILAS Internship program (Programa de Internos, Los Alamos), a workforce development project that gives students the opportunity to work with local businesses to gain employable skills while earning an hourly wage and academic credit. The interns, who will begin working in August, will receive pay through the college, not the business partners. The college is seeking businesses that would like to participate in the program.

Ya’el Chaikind, SFCC’s PILAS internship coordinator said, “Students often cite financial challenges as one of the barriers to earning a degree. This internship program will give students the opportunity to earn pay while gaining employable skills. The collaboration with area businesses will expand our students’ opportunities to eventually transition from an intern to a valued and qualified paid employee.”

Participating businesses will assign student interns a project and mentor them through to completion. Students will spend between 50 to 80 hours in their internship and will earn academic credit. Internships begin between Aug. 1 and Sept. 15 and will end by Nov. 9.

Interim president, Cecilia Cervantes, Ph.D., said, “The internships connect a student’s program of study with real workplace activities, providing the ‘spark’ that students need to continue their studies to completion. We’re so appreciative of the support we’ve received from LANL and SFCC Foundation so we can help alleviate the financial burden from our students as well as avoid placing it on our local business partners.”

Student interns can learn practical skills, which may include creating presentations; conducting research; designing customer surveys; planning projects and events; designing or managing websites; scheduling social media posts; bookkeeping/accounting; or participating in a technology-based project. Employers will propose specific projects and work with the college to determine which skills will benefit the intern and are applicable to their major.

Collaborative support from Los Alamos National Security, LLC, Los Alamos National Laboratory, SFCC and Santa Fe Community College Foundation makes PILAS possible.

Businesses and organizations interested in mentoring an SFCC student intern can contact Chaikind at 505-428-1418 or randiyael.chaikind@sfcc.edu for more information. As the Internship Coordinator, Chaikind serves as the liaison between business mentors and students, offering support to create an inspiring internship experience for everyone involved.

Current students should contact Chaikind immediately about one of the internship opportunities. There is a two-hour orientation prior to placement.

Enrollment for SFCC’s fall semester is ongoing. For information about fall semester registration call 505-428-1270 or visit sfcc.edu.


For more than three decades, Santa Fe Community College has served as the gateway to success for individuals and the community. SFCC provides affordable, high quality educational programs that serve the social, cultural, technological and economic needs of a diverse community. The college serves more than 15,000 students per year in its credit, noncredit and adult education programs. For further information, visit the website or call 505-428-1000. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.