Employers’ Guide on Internships
Internships are generally regarded as temporary positions created by companies to provide experiential or work-related learning to students at the university level. A good internship program allows for the proper integration of knowledge and practice in professional settings under supervision.
Objectives of Internships
- Internships are community centered. It follows that all work related instructions, requirements, and evaluations be adjusted for this purpose as opposed to regular positions.
- Internships are also student centered so that work assignments are designed according to the learning needs of the student. It follows that for the same work assignment or position, the design and expectations of work are customized for learning.
- It is important to preserve the motive for learning in internships as interns can drift away from internship learning goals if they are exposed to opportunities of short-term monetary or material rewards.
- A properly designed internship program incorporates meaningful works, works that are career related, or tasks that incorporate elements of professionalism, and hands on experience that are absent from university learning.
- Internship supervisors are often managers or senior staff. Supervisors should become aware of the differences between internship supervision and regular work supervision.
- Internship work schedules, part time or full time, should incorporate time for learning — time for discussion with supervisory staff, for notes taking, for reflection, and for rest as these are the essential elements for quality learning