Benoit Announces Selection of AQMD Summer Interns

News Release


Jul 23

Benoit Announces Selection of AQMD Summer Interns

DIAMOND BAR – A Desert Christian Academy high school student and a college graduate from Moreno Valley are working as summer interns with the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), marking their second time in the program.

“Through this competitive and prestigious program, these students gain invaluable experience working in the largest and most advanced air quality district in the United States,” said Supervisor John J. Benoit, who serves on the AQMD Governing Board. “Both interns participated in this program last summer, and we’re pleased to have them return and build on their experience.”

Now in its 14th year, AQMD’s student internship program encourages students to consider careers in air quality or other environmental fields. Assignments are available in the district’s chemistry laboratory, information management, engineering, technology advancement, environmental and policy analysis, finance, human resources, legislative and public affairs, media relations, environmental law and other functions.

A senior at Desert Christian Academy, William Nelson will intern in the science and technology advancement office. During his internship last summer, he reprogrammed a compliance calculator for an incentive program that replaces older off-road diesel vehicle engines with new, cleaner engines. He audited contracts and evaluated malfunctioning filters on school district buses. A leader in his student class, Nelson has been involved in Supervisor Benoit’s Youth Advisory Council in each of his high school years and this past school year served as Fourth District Commissioner for the Riverside County Youth Commission.

Kailah Byrd of Moreno Valley will intern again in the district’s legislative and public affairs division. She recently graduated from Oakwood University in Huntsville, Ala. with a bachelor’s degree in communication media. While learning about air quality and environmental justice issues, she developed experience in video production and broadcast in the government realm. A highlight of her past summer internship was writing, shooting, directing and producing an orientation video for future interns. Her career goals are to become an actress, writer and TV talk show host.

Students work side-by-side with air quality professionals involved in programs designed to clean the air and improve the quality of life for residents in Southern California. College interns are paid $10 per hour and high school interns are paid $8 an hour.

AQMD’s Governing Board members will begin accepting applications in mid-February for the 2014 summer intern program and start making their selections in April. Interested students may request further information by emailing

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