It’s that time of year when our summer interns are packing up and getting ready to go back to school. They are cleaning out their desks and smiling more. I know the end is near and it’s sad.
Boston Financial has opened their doors to both formal – Year Up and Boston Private Industry Council – and informal – “hey my kid is looking for a job this summer” – internships. And, we have benefited greatly from both types of internships.
From my employer viewpoint, there are two key benefits to summer internships:
- Gaining access to recent academic experience and research and
- Resources to accelerate projects.
Here are a few practical examples of how our interns helped us take our ideas to implementation.
Our corporate marketing intern, Rebekah Darsch, helped us with the implementation of our internal and external social media program. She developed, designed and delivered a Twitter training program for our executives – highlighting the value of Twitter in today’s social world and setting up their accounts.
Kevin Narine, our web development intern, has been with us for two summers. For our annual client conference, he supported the implementation of a conference app. Of course, he made the whole process look very easy because it was for him!
What’s Their Perspective?
This is what they told me.
“Although learning from textbooks and lectures is beneficial, some of the most important skills are learned outside of the classroom. My internship has given me the opportunity to experience working in a professional setting. As a Communication major, there are various career routes I can take and this internship has allowed me to test drive a potential option. This opportunity will undoubtedly lead me in the right direction and contribute to my success in the future.”
“As someone who has always learned by doing, my time at Boston Financial has proved to be most rewarding. I gained great insight into the complex and evolving business world, insight that will without a doubt help me along my path to higher learning. This type of hands on experience will stay with me for the rest of my life.”
Making it Work for You and Them
- You Probably Can’t Do it Alone. Engage your team and it will provide a diversity of experience and perspective, as well as spreading the responsibility amongst the team.
- Set the Ground Rules. Interns need to take responsibility and accountability for their work. They also need to bring a good work ethic to the assignment. Challenge them: “If they work hard and bring ideas to your organization, what will they get in return?”
Knock Knock, Who’s There?
The next time someone knocks on your door looking for an internship opportunity open the door; you never know who will be there. You may learn something and you may progress a project that you have been excited about but has been sitting idly due to resources. Although I am sad summer is coming to a close, I am looking forward to next summer to see who might be knocking on my door.
What are your ideas for a successful internship?