As summer approaches, companies in animal health are preparing for internship season. COVID-19 will naturally affect how organizations hire and employ interns since many states in the U.S. still have heavy restrictions in place to combat the spread of the virus. Meanwhile, students are struggling right now. Not only have they had to adjust to e-learning, many have had to miss milestones such as promo and graduation. Many students also had internships lined up for the summer that have now been cancelled and they are looking for new opportunities that are remote. Here is a simple guide to hiring interns during quarantine.
Rely on Technology
The good thing about student interns is that most of them are tech savvy. They can adapt the technology your organization is using to communicate during the quarantine quickly. Many are also on LinkedIn and other professional networking sites, which will make it easier for companies to find and connect with them. You will likely find the demand for internships is high right now. Many of the educational and careers plans students had have been disrupted, so they are looking for career development opportunities to help put them back on course.
Communication Is Key
For students, internships are an opportunity to grow their network and learn more about the industries they are interested in pursuing a career in. It will be more difficult for interns to make connections and gain a feel for the job. This is why communication is going to be so important. Employers will need to be able to communicate to interns how the remote work they are doing differs from the experience they would have working in an office. Effective communication will also help interns establish more meaningful professional relationships during their virtual internships.
Give Extra Guidance to Managers
Many leaders in animal health had little experience managing remote workers before the quarantine began. Managing interns remotely differs slightly than managing established employees because interns will need more mentorship and guidance. Managers may need some additional training so they can provide interns with the support they will need to thrive in their internships. Many student interns likely share their workspace with family and might not have a private place to work, which is just one issue interns may face. Managers will need be understanding and patient when working with interns remotely.
Internships are a great way for students to get hands-on experience in the animal health field. However, the current situation with COVID-19 promises to make the summer internship experience different than in past years. With the right technology and strong communication companies can still maintain their summer internship programs remotely.
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