Rural America is at an inflection point. Once seen as the beating heartbeat of the United States, shifts within the country’s economy have led many rural communities scrambling to find a replacement for the activity and economic viability that was once brought by the now-shuttered factory, or even factories, that breathed life into the community.

Having young citizens leave these communities in search of a better way of life became commonplace. Indeed, the percentage of Americans living in rural communities declined from 30% in 1960 to 17% in 2021. As people trickled out, so did the services and employment opportunities that became unnecessary as the population dwindled. As a true sign of the times, there is only one dedicated maternity ward, located in Farrell, to serve all of Mercer County because not enough local people were having babies.

The result of this slow bleed out has been communities that are seeing vast jumps in social issues at the same time that services are being rolled back, creating a breeding ground where problems literally multiply year after year. Social service agencies are strapped both financially and when it comes to finding enough quality personnel to satisfy the increased demand for their services. Employers of all stripes have a difficult time finding potential employees that can pass a drug test. Disintegration of the traditional family unit has created a lack of responsibility in young fathers to care for their children. After becoming aware of a 26-year-old grandmother, a local agency estimates that Mercer County has children that now represent the 5th generation of poverty in their families.

Despite all of these hardships, there is, in fact, hope. Americans are increasingly opening their eyes when it comes to addressing social problems in their communities. Social entrepreneurs that exhibit a desire to attack these issues directly are gaining momentum while, at the same time, foundations are providing much-needed funding through program and mission-related investments. Private citizens are stepping in to help neighbors where government programming has failed.

This backdrop, both good and bad, reflects the current situation in Grove City. Core problems such as addiction, inadequate workforce development, a high cost of housing, and a breakdown of the traditional family are being addressed by a dedicated citizenry for which failure is not an option. As that group ages, it is creating an opportunity for a new generation to accept the passed torch and build upon the foundation of great work that the previous generation has laid.


The Common Good Project represents the unique opportunity for students to come alongside the Center for E+I with the goal of addressing the social issues facing Grove City and it’s residents.

Over the course of the next year, the project will:

    • Complete a needs assessment of Grove City and the immediate surrounding vicinity.
    • Analyze the information uncovered by the needs assessment to explore solutions to the identified gaps and issues.
    • Engage both the campus and the larger Grove City community to play key roles in this initiative.

Initially, E+I will hire two interns to join the Common Good Project. Benefits of participation include:

Help better the local community

Gain valuable work experience

Get paid for your work ($15/hour)


Start Building an irresistible résumé

Students: Let’s get you involved!

Now that we have your attention, let’s talk about the internship! As part of the project, students will work primarily under the direction of Professor Kyle English, the Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Western PA & Eastern OH with the objective of identifying the needs of the community and potential solutions to those needs.

The interns selected will produce a detailed report that can be supplied to community leaders so there can be a more focused approach to delivering services that will elevate the lives of Grove City’s residents.

Click below for an expanded job description including responsibilities, duties, and qualifications.

Read the full job description!

E+I Common Good Project Intern – Grove City Needs Assessment

Job Overview

The Common Good Project Intern will play a critical role in researching and gathering information so that gaps in services within the social sector of Grove City can be identified with the goal of assisting the community and the Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation in identifying the types of solutions that can be deployed. The desired outcome of the intern’s work is to produce a detailed report that can be supplied to community leaders so there can be a more focused approach to delivering services that will elevate the lives of Grove City’s residents. The intern will report to Professor Yvonne J. English, Executive Director + Entrepreneur in Residence, Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation, but will primarily work under the direction of Professor Kyle English, the Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Western PA & Eastern OH.


Meetings and work are expected to take place primarily on campus.

Why You Should Consider Applying

This internship is an incredible experience to serve the neighbor who you don’t know while learning a variety of skills and building your résumé while being paid!

Responsibilities and Duties

You don’t need to know how to do all the items below – you just need to be willing to learn.

  • Examine and summarize the demographics of Grove City and the surrounding communities within 15 miles of the borough
  • Research current community assets that are serving vulnerable Grove City residents
  • Assist in determining the scope of the assessment and whether more than one social issue should be focused upon
  • Collect secondary and then primary data surrounding the selected social issue(s)
  • Build a SWOT analysis to organize the data before working as a team to draft the final report that will be distributed and presented to the Grove City community
  • Potential event coordination work should focus groups or community gatherings be required in the course of data collection
  • Other ad hoc project duties


  • Current Grove City College undergraduate sophomore, junior, or senior – all majors are welcome to apply.
  • Knowledge of (or ability to find) various resources that are available through the Grove City College library and online from which data will be collected
  • Strong communication skills
  • An ability to be flexible while embracing the concept that tasks may change as data is collected
  • Detail-oriented

The Common Good Project Intern will be paid by the Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation at a rate of $15/hour. Initially, E+I will hire two interns for this position. Interns will be expected to devote a minimum of 8 hours per week to activities related to the position.

Please note that student employees may work a maximum of 20 hours combined across all campus jobs.



If you have read the above job description and feel that you would be a great asset to the Common Good Project, we encourage you to apply!

Applications are now open and will be considered until September 22nd, 2023.

Interviews for the Common Good Project will take place on September 26th from 1-4 PM. Students selected for interviews will be contacted via email to select an interview timeslot. If you have a scheduling conflict during the alloted interview time, an alternative time can be arranged.

Have questions about the Common Good Project? Contact Professor Yvonne J. English today!

Supported by the Grove City Foundation