Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

5 FOR ... JEFF ANKROM; Professor of Economics at Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

5 FOR ... JEFF ANKROM; Professor of Economics at Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio

Article excerpt

Byline: Wendi Zongker

You recently supervised a group of eight interns from all over the country who worked in Fernandina Beach for eight weeks. Why were you here?

What we have done is try to get people interested in public service with this program. Most students who come to college - and I have advised a lot of students - think about going into business or law school or medical school. And the idea of this type of public service - working for city or county government - is not on their radar screen. We're trying to create public servants. The people who we have put through this program over the years have gone into public service.

What projects did the interns work on?

One of the big projects involved a couple of students. It was the Cumberland Island access project. There is an attempt to bring Fernandina Beach and Cumberland Island closer together and make it easier for people to go back and forth within the triangle including St. Marys. We had another student who worked with the community development department on a historic district survey. Another student worked in the police department and helped update their general policy manual. A couple of the interns worked on a recycling and trash disposal project. One student did a research project on identification cards, the types of cards you would use to get all or partial access to a building. Currently, city employees wear ID cards around their necks. This would take it further and it would allow the right people to have access more or less to sensitive parts of the building. We also had one student work on an airport economic impact analysis.

What recommendations did the interns make?

One was to try to do everything they can to publicize and document the benefits of the Cumberland Island access project. …

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