Michael Fitzsimmons, recently employed by the Town of Rimbey as a municipal intern, is learning about the community from the ground up.
Fitzsimmons, a graduate from the University of Saskatchewan with a degree in regional urban planning, began work for the town June 8.
His workday may include being a liaison with developers, attending council meetings, studying documents related to Rimbey’s bylaws or helping out in the recreation or public works departments.
Living and working in Rimbey is appealing for Fitzsimmons, who grew up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
“Growing up in a city like Saskatoon is quite a bit different,’ he said. “It’s nice to be able to walk to work.”
Learning the ropes of municipal government in a small town is surprisingly busy, he said.
“My first impression of such a small town is that it s relaxed and there is not so much going on, but, really, it is quite busy. And Main Street is quite busy,” he added.
Donna Tona, interim CAO for the Town of Rimbey said hiring Fitzsimmons has been possible through a provincial grant program.
“We are able to give graduates (of municipal government related post secondary studies) a real world experience,” she said.
She said Alberta is the only province that offers the program.
“There are 22 of them this year and they are an amazing group of interns.”
She said she is pleased to have Fitzsimmons on board.
“We interviewed candidates that wanted the small town experience. We are very fortunate to have him. Now we need to find a volunteer opportunity for him, as well.”