Mangilao location celebrates its fifth anniversary as Guam’s first and only student-run member service center
Mangilao, Guam- Community First Guam Federal Credit Union announced today the selection of six college students from the University of Guam (UOG) for its 2023 Community First Internship Program which develops and mentors students from Guam to pursue careers in the finance industry. 2023 also marks the fifth anniversary of the program’s launch and the opening of Community First’s Mangilao Member Service Center, Guam’s first and only student-run credit union, where the program is based.
The six interns selected for the 2023 Spring program are as follows:
Napu Aguon - University of Guam Business Administration General Pathway major graduating in the Spring of 2023
Princess Fernandez - University of Guam Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting major graduating in Spring of 2025
Bryne Garcia - University of Guam Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting major graduating in Spring of 2024
David Lagman - University of Guam Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting major graduating in Spring of 2024
William Romero - University of Guam Business Administration major with a concentration in Finance and Economics graduating in the Spring of 2023
Vanisha Sharma - University of Guam Business Administration Finance and Economics Pathway major graduating in the Spring of 2024
Gerard Cruz, President and CEO of Community First, said, “Since the program’s launch in 2018, Community First has welcomed 34 interns to train firsthand in financial services while receiving valuable mentorship and real-world experience that prepares them for a career after college. As Guam’s first and only student-run credit union, we are proud to be working closely with the University of Guam and Guam Community College to provide a quality program that invests in our students. Over the years, we have hired 12 of our interns to become part of the Community First team.”
During the two-semester program, students are fully trained in the credit union’s policies and procedures and are mentored by a Community First manager. The interns utilize their experience to springboard into a career in the finance industry while gaining valuable experience working part-time while earning their degrees. Students work around their class schedules and train as a team two days a week.
Jacob Richards, a resident of Yigo, completed the Community First Internship Program and graduated from UOG in 2020 with a degree in Mathematics. He was offered a full-time position in the Mortgage department as a loan processor then moved to the Member Business Loans department where he is now a Credit Officer.
Richards said, “I learned so much from my internship projects and from being a part of the day-to-day operations at the Mangilao Member Service Center. I gained incredible insight into the industry as well as the certainty that this is a career worth pursuing.”
Kamerin Guerrero, a resident of Dededo and the Personnel Officer at the Hagåtña Member Service Center, completed her internship and graduated from UOG in 2021 with a degree in Business Administration. Soon after, she was selected for the company’s 18-month Officer Training Program which gives candidates the professional experience of working in every department of the credit union.
Guerrero said, “I feel so fortunate to have been selected for this program in 2021. After I earned my degree, Community First offered me a valuable opportunity to fast-track my career through the company’s Officer Training Program. I now work in the Human Resources Department and contribute to the internship program by onboarding and training the next generation of interns. I encourage college students from GCC and UOG to consider applying for our program next year.”