Belvidere native who wants to wipe out Rockford stereotypes wins - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Belvidere native who wants to wipe out Rockford stereotypes wins YMCA Intern Challenge

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You're hired!  That's what a college student heard Thursday night after winning the YMCA Intern Challenge.

"Renee, you're hired," said the Rock River Valley YMCA President and CEO Mike Brown.

"I mean, even if I had lost, I would've wanted to come back as a mentor next year," said Renee Jalbert, the winner of the summer competition.

She is a 20-year-old student at Carthage College.  Jalbert was one of 15 intern challenge contestants this summer at the Y.  

It's an Apprentice-style contest with weekly challenges and eliminations in a boardroom.  

Thursday night's event was at Rockford University, which was the presenting sponsor.  

The Y says that buy-in from the community is what really will pay off in the long run.

"The big picture is to make sure they know Rockford has opportunity. It's not the city that is as depressed as they were told or grew up thinking," said Brown.

Jalbert gets a $5,000 paid internship from the Y.  But she can go wherever she chooses.  She says she wants intern at a local hospital.

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