Applications Now Open for Apprentice Austin- A city-wide mentoring program hosted by the Austin Young Chamber

The Austin Young Chamber of Commerce (AYC) is accepting applications for the 3rdclass of Apprentice Austin, a city-wide mentoring program designed to develop tomorrow’s young professionals and the future leaders of Austin. Apprentice Austin will pair 30 students from area universities with 30 young professionals for an 8 month, 10-14 session mentoring opportunity for a student to learn from a local leader in an area of their career interests. Applications are available online for both mentors and apprentices at and will be accepted from now until Oct. 1, 2011. Apprentices chosen for the program will be announced on Oct. 5, with the apprentice and mentor matching announcement on Oct. 15. The program will run from Oct. 24, 2011 through April 13, 2012.

 Mentors give one hour every other week to their apprentices to help guide the student on career development, make contacts and network in Austin, and offer work advice and community awareness. The program kicks-off with a launch party and culminates in a graduation ceremony with the apprentices, mentors, local leaders, key stakeholders from the University, and sponsors.

Since 2010, over 75 students have gone through the Apprentice Austin program; this is the largest mentoring program in Central Texas. The industries in this program range from pharmaceutical sales to real estate to ministry. The benefits for student apprentices include an opportunity to build their network, test drive a career through shadowing their mentor, learn the ins and outs of a career and/or industry from a peer in the position, and receive a free annual AYC membership. The benefits for professionals/mentors include connecting with tomorrow’s top talent, helping job seekers skip mistakes and follow steps to success, gain a renewed interest in his or her career and receive a free annual AYC membership.


”We have been so pleased with the response from both the business and college communities in Austin,” says Nathan Green, co-founder of the Austin Young Chamber, and Board Member responsible for the program. “I have had several students tell me how valuable the experience was and how they landed their first job out of college through Apprentice Austin.”


“St. Edward’s University was very proud to participate in the Austin Young Chamber’s Apprentice Austin mentoring program,” said Barbara Henderson, Director of Career Services at St. Edward’s University. “The students were able to make connections through networking and get hands on experience in their related fields of interest. This type of program will prove to be invaluable for the future successes of our students as they begin their careers in the Austin community.”


Due to the success of Apprentice Austin, the Belton Chamber of Commerce has decided to develop a similar version of the program with the blessing of the Austin Young Chamber. Billy Moyer, Vice Chair of the Apprentice Austin program, has helped the Belton Chamber develop the Apprentice Belton program that will begin this fall. Apprentice Belton will team up with the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (UMHB) to give students an opportunity to be mentored by professionals who work in their desired career or industry.


“We have always been committed to developing young talent in Belton, Texas,” Stephanie O’Banion, CEO of the Belton Chamber said. “After hearing about the success of Apprentice Austin, we thought bringing the program to Belton was a perfect fit. We look forward to helping the students of UMHB figure out what they want to do and hopefully we will keep them in the area.” 

Student Testimonials about Apprentice Austin:

“I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at Apprentice Austin. I felt honored to be a part of such a great program where mentorship is a top priority and the benefits of the Austin Young Chamber of Commerce are given freely. I learned a great deal from my mentor, Coco Valdez. She gave me further insights into the non-profit sector that I would have never have learned inside a classroom. It was obvious that Coco was a true servant and simply desired to share her passion for her career with others. She didn’t expect anything back and sacrificed her time to meet with me. She truly confirmed my desire to pursue a career in non-profits and especially in the area of programming and event coordinating. I will always remember this experience and will continue to seek mentor relationships wherever my future may lead me.”

Lya Morfit, Apprentice

Concordia University 

“I really enjoyed my experience with Apprentice Austin. I was able to meet new people and to learn different aspects of the career field which I am pursing from the perspective of related fields. My mentor has also been very helpful, motivating me to think about the future. He held me accountable for writing down and actively pursuing my goals while inspiring me by discussing his progress towards his own goals. I’m glad for the opportunity to expand my horizons that Apprentice Austin has provided me.”

Mariel Kerbacher, Apprentice

Southwestern University and the University of Texas


“My experience as a mentor was spectacular. I loved meeting with my apprentice, Rachel every other week. We developed a very strong relationship and we continue to talk today. I have had many mentors in my life and Apprentice Austin gave me an opportunity to give back by being a mentor myself. It turns out that I probably learned more from Rachel than she did from me!” 

Amber Fogarty, Mentor

Chief Marketing Officer, SOS Leadership Institute

Adjunct Professor at St. Edward’s University

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