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Internship Best Practices Essay

819 words - 4 pages

Internships may be paid or unpaid positions with menial or skilled responsibilities. When looking at internships it is important to be involved with a successful internship program. What are the best practices used by a business to create a positive internship program and who benefits from these internship programs? The opportunities a student can encounter during an internship can teach you numerous beneficial skills and expose you to opportunities you would not receive during the university experience. Low pay, menial task assignments, and wasting the majority of your workday should not be what you expect or accept in an internship that you want to be an effective tool in your educational ...view middle of the document...

Rarely should an intern be expected to work without pay. When an intern is fairly compensated, they can be expected to perform at a higher level and held accountable for their responsibilities. It is important for companies to realize that interns are giving up other opportunities in order to be involved with their company. The rest of the best practices discussed by Reding and O’Bryan pertain to issues that occur once an intern has been selected for employment.
The third practice is to communicate with the intern effectively during the entire process. They are there to learn about the organization and their responsibilities and expectations. The next practice is to invite the interns to an orientation in which they meet employees, learn the culture, and observe employees with similar roles (Reding &O’Brian, p 45). Mentoring the interns is the next practice in establishing a successful program. A mentor should meet with the interns throughout the process and allow them to ask various questions. Next, the intern should have specific activities for their first day of work. Procedures and responsibilities should be discussed and their workspace should be ready to use. The seventh practice entails a goal of the organization to help the intern have a meaningful work experience. “The single most important best practice for establishing and sustaining a high quality internship program is to treat interns as entry-level employees, not interns” according to former intern Jennifer Shewmake (Reding & O’Brian, p. 45). The purpose of this...

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