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Birmingham-based Coca-Cola UNITED accepting applications for sixth annual internship program for HBCU students

Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED is now seeking applicants for the 2021 edition of the company’s “Pay It Forward” program, which aims to provide African-American students with enhanced opportunities to celebrate their achievements and further their success.

Normally, this program is a week-long, in person experience; however, students will participate virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This same accommodation was also made last year because of the virus.

Historically Black College and University (HBCU) students from 16 schools throughout Coca-Cola UNITED’s six-state footprint can submit applications from February 1 through April 30.

The company is headquartered in Birmingham and also has major operations in Montgomery and Mobile, among other locations.

Now in its sixth year, the “Pay It Forward” opportunity is open to those age 18 years or older at time of entry; applicants must be enrolled as a full-time undergraduate college student at a participating HBCU.

Those selected for the prestigious program will be given the opportunity to participate in a week-long internship at a Coca-Cola UNITED facility. The program offers students firsthand experience in a range of roles available at Coca-Cola, including operations management, packaging, pricing, event planning and philanthropy.

The company will ultimately select 32 students total based on a review of submitted applications. A $1,000 stipend will be given to each of the selected HBCU students at the end of the program, as well as a lifetime of Coca-Cola Brand Ambassadorship.

These selected students will engage with Coca-Cola Company teams to learn more about the organization and how to conduct business most effectively during a fun and informative development session to be held late in the summer.

“More than ever Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED is looking forward to providing these outstanding group of ‘Pay It Forward’ interns with unique opportunities to learn tangible business skills,” stated John Sherman, president and CEO of Coca-Cola Bottling Co. UNITED. “Our intent through this program is to engage with these young adults, empowering them to set goals as they embark on their bright futures, hopefully at Coca-Cola.”

Learn more about the program or apply here.

Coca-Cola United, founded in 1902 and headquartered in the Magic City, is the second-largest privately held Coca-Cola bottler in North America and the third-largest bottler of Coca-Cola products in the United States. Now with its fifth generation of family working in the business, the Yellowhammer State company has approximately 10,000 associates located in more than 60 facilities across Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

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