The Washington D.C.-based  Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU)  is reaching out to the private sector, including Atlanta companies, from  its traditional reliance on U.S. federal agencies for its internship program.

      Antonio Flores, the president of HACU, met at the Carter Center with representatives of companies here last month to promote the program which traditionally has been supported by agencies such as the U.S. departments of agriculture, commerce and energy.

      He said that the students, who are carefully screened, would facilitate the efforts of companies seeking to extend their activities to Spanish-speaking countries.

      During this past summer, 331 interns were placed in federal agencies.  HSIs are non-profit, accredited colleges and universities where Hispanics constitute at least 25% of the total enrollment at the graduate and undergraduate level.

      For more information, call William Doonan, director of the HACU national internship program , at (202) 467-0893; fax, (202) 496-9177.