Rhonda Abrams at USA Today:

Look around and you’ll notice many college interns at businesses — especially big corporations — this summer. There’s a good reason: the competition to hire quality college graduates is intense, and one way to recruit future employees is by hiring them as interns while still in school.

Even for small businesses and companies not looking for future employees, there are many good reasons to hire college interns — whether for the summer or during the school year. But hiring interns is not for every business.

When thinking about hiring summer interns for your business, consider:

  • Pay: Most people believe, wrongly, that interns are not paid. Not true. Unless interns receive academic credit for working for you, which they must arrange with their college beforehand, or yours is a non-profit agency, interns are covered by regular employment laws.
  • Job responsibilities: Interns are there to learn — not just to do filing or be a source of cheap labor. If you’re looking for inexpensive workers for menial work, advertise your opening as a temporary job, not an internship.
  • Supervision: Interns take time. Even if you hire college juniors or seniors, they’re still much less experienced than others on your staff.
  • Hiring: Many students start looking for summer internships in April or May though you can still find some as late as June, even July.
  • Hire two or more: Hey, to students, even the 31-year-old on my staff is old. It’s a better experience for them if they have other students to relate to.

Photo by MSDesigns.

Originally posted by Rich Whittle on July 11, 2007 in Ideas.

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