The Bridge Program

Helping students to attain purposeful and career-enhancing project fellowship opportunities.

Produced by Shiyu Zhao, Katz MS ’23 student

Creating Business Impact in the Community

Overview

The Katz Bridge Program helps students to attain purposeful and career-enhancing project fellowship opportunities while providing support for community-based partners. Over the course of eight weeks during the summer, teams of Katz students are matched with community partners to assist with developing and implementing solutions for the complex challenges the partners face daily. These challenges vary by partner, but the goal is to help the organization better serve the Pittsburgh community. For example, previous projects have included improving internal financial processes for local food pantries, identifying gaps between in-need communities and services provided by non-government organizations, and supporting better public health agencies for those in need.


Program Structure

Projects:

  • Consulting style projects
  • 3 to 4 students per project, working virtually
  • Executives-in-Residence or Coaches assigned to each project; Corporate Engagement member as a communication liaison

Timelines:

  • Applications available: Late April

  • Applications due: May

  • Project kick-off: June
  • Projects end: Early August

Approximate 8 to 10 hour commitment per week.

Program Value

Students

  • Apply business skills and experience to help the local community
  • Develop critical knowledge, skills, and abilities for the future and obtain real-world experience
  • Supportive team environment with guidance from an executive coach and the Katz Program Management Office
  • Fellowship stipend provided

Community-Based Organizations

Pittsburgh community partners receive advice and solutions from a team of Katz MBA and MS students. Katz students are diverse, multi-skilled, and talented. The teams are student-led with support from an executive coach and the Katz Program Management Office. Student teams work closely with the partners to develop creative solutions to organizational challenges. Partnering with Katz can also help an organization spread awareness of its services and brand.

Participating organizations include:

Bridge Program Community Partners Logos

Eligibility & Application Process

This eight-week program is for Katz graduate students who are in full-time and part-time MBA programs, Master of Science programs, or Dual Degree MBA/MS Programs.

Bridge Program applications are launched at the end of April every year and distributed via The Katz Glance, a weekly news digest.

  • Complete the application
  • Provide a PDF of your current resume
  • Briefly describe why working on a project related to a community organization or local business would be an exciting and beneficial experience

Get Involved

To learn more about how you can help support the Bridge Program, please contact the Katz Career Management Team at careermanagement@katz.pitt.edu.

Download the Bridge Program info session presentation

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT

The Bridge Program built on things we already learned at Katz. I had the opportunity to work with a team with diverse academic backgrounds. It felt like a real work problem that wasn’t perfect and wasn’t set up for you to find a solution immediately. We were able to prove to ourselves that we can bring everything together and drive change in our community.

William Hoffenkamp

MS '22

I’ve always wanted to find an opportunity to apply what I’ve learned at Katz and try to solve problems in real life. It’s a great feeling to see that Heinz History Center is actually using the recommendations we gave as a Bridge Program team and is already making improvements.

Chenxi Xu

MS '21