Back in 2008 (which feels like eons ago), I had the great opportunity to intern for a nonprofit called Youth First Texas, an organization in which I first became involved in 2006. This summer internship program offered three youth members to get firsthand experience as to the work that went into running the organization. We worked immediately with the Director of Operations and Director of Programs. We also took care of the youth center, helped volunteers, and guided the new youth that came.
While in this program, I got a good grasp on the way the organization was functioning. At the end of the internship, I was offered an administrative assistant position that eventually included volunteer training and creating a G.E.D. assistance program.
The internship was a great stepping stone for me, and even provided information that helped me start my own nonprofit a few years later. Throughout my adult life, I have used everything that I learned from my internship at YFT. It was a life-changing experience.
A big question looms for other organizations and businesses: What’s in it for us? What are the benefits to having an internship? Well, after reading an article from The College of St. Scholastica as well as a blog post from The Balance Careers website, I’ve narrowed down the information to give you the top 5 reasons that you should create an internship program:
- Expose young professionals to your brand – they may not work for you forever and could very well bring up your company’s products and services at their next stop.
- Mold interns to be the ideal entry-level hire – finding the perfect person for an entry-level position can be tough; why not create one from scratch through an intern?
- Two heads are better than one and four hands are better than two – the more people you have around, the more productive you can be!
- Easily evaluate new talent without the commitment of hiring – maybe one of the interns is perfect for a specific job; find out how much of a match they can be without worrying about paying them just yet.
- Uncover new perspectives – get even ideas about changes you can make to marketing, policies that you can implement, and new products that you can sell
You can see how this relationship is mutually beneficial. So the next time you’re wondering how you can do some training and get an extra set of hands – without breaking the bank – consider an internship program!