Intern Bridge was created to bridge the gap between students and employers and is focused on researching and sharing internship best practices to give students and employers a better understanding of each other and each others’ needs. Intern Bridge prepared a list of these best practices based on the survey taken in late fall of 2007.
Intern Bridge is the developer of the book Total Internship Management and offers resources for both employers and universities.
Here is a list of Internship Best Practices based on the survey:
Meaningful Work Assignments
Interns want to be treated as employees and prefer to receive both short term and long term assignments. Long term assignments are a good way to ensure that the intern always has something to keep them busy and productive, especially when the supervisor is not available.
Students want to know everything they can about an organization prior to starting the actual work. They are interested in things like: co-workers, working conditions, organizational chart, working hours, the mission of the organization, where to get technical assistance, employer expectations, dress code, tour of the facility, emergency procedures, company policies, schedule of work for duration of program, opportunities to network, offer of employment rates for past interns, customers of the organization, and project timeframes.
Students seek supervisors who are available, can answer questions, and who treat them professionally and respectfully. Supervisors should be selected carefully and have the ability to communicate and relate to college students.
Market to Employees and Colleges
The most common way that students learn about internships is by networking with family, friends, faculty, and college alumni. A good strategy is to alert employees to your internship program as well as listing it on the College Board website.
Interview and Selection Process
Recommends the use of the behaviorial interview since many students prepare for these types of interviews based on recommendations from their career services office at their college.
Recommends that all employers offer some form of compensation. College credit is awarded by the students college or university, not by the employer. According to the survey from November 2007, the average compensation for an intern is $12.09.