Getting help with finding internships for your students

May 3, 2011 at 11:35 am | Posted in career center | Leave a comment
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Susan Sandberg

You probably have a long line of students at your door, all wanting summer internships. Spring is usually the busiest time of the year for overworked career services professionals who wish they had lots of interns to help them. However, take heart. You do have resources available to you. Check out the following:

  • College committees:  Faculty members inElonCollege, theCollege ofArts and Sciences, have formed a committee that will temporarily serve as a means of discussion for internships within the college. The newly formed committee is looking at broad questions regarding internships, according to Pam Kiser, the committee chair and professor of human service studies. Kiser said members of the committee have been discussing pertinent questions, such as the best practices for academic internships, the hallmarks of high quality internships, what a syllabus for an internship looks like, what kind of training and faculty development for mentoring internships and what types of compensation are appropriate for faculty.  Could you organize such a committee at your college to help you?
  • Online databases:  According to a recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle, the days of finding summer internship opportunities through the school career counselor are in the past. “The competition to land internships is fierce. This requires new strategies, and at times, gutsy moves.” Although this article may be exaggerating the diminishing role of the school career counselor, students do have a large array of Web sites, where they can take responsibility for finding themselves the best internships. If your students do their research on, you can track and review their activity records through monthly reports, ensuring that your students are active participants in the internship process.
  • Affiliate University status:  If you register to be an Affiliate, you can post internships exclusively to students at your university, receive custom analytics and statistics about your students, have access to a dedicated client care team, and get reports on industry trends and data. You can also put your own career center’s logo and colors on materials for a customized appearance. As an Affiliate, you can receive and send monthly e-newsletters to students about the internships industry, opportunities, and resume/career tips. Also, your school will receive a press release detailing the positive aspects of the new partnership. Another option is to register as a Basic member. For details, click on New Services for your CareerCenter on the Web site.
  • Partnerships:  The weak economy has left all government agencies from municipal to federal without any option but to cut the number of workers or put a freeze on hiring. Formerly an excellent resource for paid summer internships, these agencies may now be a good place to develop a partnership for unpaid summer internships for students. The experience could be invaluable in gaining future internships and networking. If students apply to a government-related agency in their home towns, living at home might offset the unpaid aspect. As a career services professional, you have the credentials to build such partnerships that can benefit your students. A struggling agency may welcome your student interns in a win-win situation for everyone.

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