The 2021 Top City Interns program will return for its fifth year on June 1 with a kickoff celebration at Topeka Zoo and Conservation Center. In all, 70 in-person interns and a total of 200 interns will be working throughout the summer. Presently, 18 different Topeka area companies are involved. At the June 1 kickoff event, interns will gather to socialize, learn more about Topeka, and get a behind-the-scenes tour of the Zoo from Director Brendan Wiley. With this and other Top City Intern events occurring throughout the summer, interns will be able to witness Topeka’s quality of life while also gaining professional and social experiences.

“We believe internships are not only valuable for a college student’s career development, but also for employers. Internships allow employers to see if someone is a good candidate for a future career at their organization,” said Cassidy Roberson, chair of the Top City Interns committee. “Through the Top City Interns Program, we’re able to show summer interns opportunities in Topeka in hopes that they later consider Topeka a great place to live, work and play.”

Roberson continued, “The activities our program offers allow interns to grow professionally, network and socialize with other interns. We’re excited that regardless of COVID-19, 70-plus interns will be joining us in Topeka this year.”

Several programs, including lunch ‘n learn opportunities with executives and social events, have been organized by the Top City Interns committee with representation from several participating companies and Forge Young Talent. Virtual options will be available for these events, as well.

Kelli Maydew, executive director of Forge Young Talent, said, “Top City Interns is a great opportunity for our summer interns to get an idea of what the Capital City has to offer in terms of recreation, professional development and more. For many, this is their first introduction to Topeka. So, it’s the ideal time to extend a warm welcome and a show of community hospitality.”

“Programs such as Top City Interns offer young talent the very best experience the Capital City has to offer, so interns are able to envision themselves and their future in Topeka,” said Barbara Stapleton, vice president of business retention & talent initiatives, GO Topeka. “Efforts such as these help us establish the next generation in our workforce and expand Topeka & Shawnee County’s talent pipeline.”

Top City Interns is free for all participating interns. Companies interested in entering their interns or sponsoring this program may contact,



The Top City Interns initiative began in 2016. The program was created with the purpose of providing interns for local Topeka and Shawnee County businesses with a positive internship experience while investing in their future as professionals. The goal of the project is to impart a lasting, positive impression of Topeka and Shawnee County in the hope of retaining these young professionals in the community.