The Montana banking community has partnered with the Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship to meet a demand for well-trained graduates interested in careers in banking. The program consists of internships, curriculum oriented toward community banking, scholarships for students interested in careers in banking, guest speakers, and industry events.

Click here for the official press release announcing this new partnership.

Montana Independent Bankers Association offered the initial start-up funds for the program. We have since received additional start-up funds from Montana Bankers Association and Big Sky Western Bank who were also instrumental in the early vision and development of the program. Other banks across the state provided additional support, making this program truly a state-wide effort.

The following banking organizations are participating in the program:

  • American Bank
  • Bank of Bozeman
  • Farmers State Bank
  • First Community Bank
  • First Interstate Bank
  • First Security Bank
  • First State Bank, Malta
  • Manhattan Bank
  • Montana Bankers Association
  • Montana Independent Bankers Association
  • Opportunity Bank
  • Pioneer Federal Savings and Loan Association
  • Stockman Bank
  • Three Rivers Bank
  • Yellowstone Bank



A key part of the program is an intensive, state-wide internship program to facilitate hands-on experiences for business students. The internships are paid, and they also earn academic credit for the interns.



2019 community banking summer interns
The 2019 interns with advisor, Tim Harvey.

Click here to see past interns and photos.

Guest Speakers:

Romeo Rainey
Romeo Rainey, President of the Independent Community Bankers of America, presentd on February 10, 2020.

Click here to see other past guest speakers.


BFIN-458, Commercial Bank Management, has been designed with community banking in mind. The course focuses on the career skills needed for entry-level bankers and future bank managers. Students learn cash flow analysis, commercial and consumer lending, lien perfection, banking laws and regulations, bank financial management, and bank financial analysis. The course is primarily intended for seniors, but it may also be taken by second-semester juniors in preparation for summer banking internships.

Advisory Committee:

In late 2017, an advisory committee consisting of both industry and MSU representatives was formed to help guide the future direction of the program.

Members of the 2019-2020 Advisory Committee:

    • Gordon Johnson, American Bank
    • Clinton Gerst, Bank of Bozeman
    • Tim Schreiber, Farmers State Bank
    • Scott Nicholson, First Interstate Bank
    • Jim Ness, First Security Bank
    • Kalli Ryti, First Security Bank
    • Tom Christnacht, First Security Bank of Deer Lodge
    • Bob Galt, First State Bank of Malta
    • Justin Skillman, Manhattan Bank
    • Cary Hegreberg, Montana Bankers Association
    • Jim Brown, Montana Independent Bankers
    • Bert Bartle, Opportunity Bank
    • Phil Willett, Pioneer Federal Savings and Loan Association
    • Travis Wright, Stockman Bank
    • A.J. King, Three Rivers Bank
    • Jay Harris, Yellowstone Bank

Future Plans:

There are plans for speakers, industry events, and enhanced curriculum development focused on community banking. The program may also periodically offer professional development geared toward community banking.

Contact Information:

If you have questions regarding the program content, internships, or curriculum, please contact: Tim Harvey,, 406-994-6200

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor of the program or have sponsorship questions, please contact: Jackie Sather,, 406-994-6766

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