Internship Length: Getting the most out of your intern

When your company decides to implement an internship program, it is crucial to compile a plan for success. An internship is designed to be beneficial to both the intern and the company. Structuring your company’s program should center around the needs of the company and how much you can add to an intern’s career. The length of the internship is the main component that will need to be analyzed in order to sufficiently meet the needs of the company and the intern. Here are some tips on how to effectively get the most out of your intern with a tailored internship length.

Internship InterviewLegal

Before you begin designing your internship program, consult your legal team concerning the time frame acceptable according to state regulations. This can be a great guideline before you continue with the construction of the internship program, particularly if the internship is unpaid.

Company Stats

Based on the figures of your company, you will need to compile the necessary data to get started.  How many interns can the company support at one given time? What time of year is best to accommodate interns according to production stats?  If you can only afford a few interns, this will affect how long the duration of the program will be. Choose non peek times of year to integrate your interns and phase them out when peek times are nearing. You will most likely have more mentors available to show the interns the ropes during these less stressful times of year.

Needs of the company

What kind of work will be available for your interns?  Of course there are files that need to be organized and letters that need to be mailed.  However, you must ensure that your intern is gaining a meaningful learning experience through your organization.  How much meaningful work is available to implement into the program?  Break it down to daily tasks, projects big and small, and what the learning objective will be for each part of the program.  Don’t forget to determine the space in which the interns will be working.  What space will be allocated for the interns to work during the given time frame that you choose?

Hours Per Week

The duration of your internship program will greatly weigh on how many hours per week your interns will work for you.  It is important to keep in mind that these students may have an academic work load to maintain in the classroom, depending on the school they attend and the time of year.  A forty hour work week may be an overload during the academic year.  However, if the internship is over the summer break, a full work week may be an option. Needless to say, if you have full time interns, the program may be shorter.  If you have part time interns the program may need to be longer.


The entire objective of an internship is to provide the intern with an unprecedented learning experience that will not soon be forgotten.  Although an internship will benefit the company and may even be a recruiting pipeline, don’t forget to plan an internship duration that will best suit the learning needs of the intern.  Keep in mind that quality surpasses quantity when you plan the length of the internship program.

Are you ready to start planning the length of your company’s internship program?  To be matched with interns in the Rhode Island area, visit  This service is free that can help you locate the perfect interns for your organization.

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Bridge is a program that focuses on connecting employers and students in Rhode Island. The goal of Bridge is to match Rhode Island employers with talented students looking to gain valuable professional experience. Applying knowledge and skills acquired in college to a professional setting is a vital component of a student’s college education. Students who gain relevant internship experience are better prepared for full-time employment after graduation. By hiring interns, employers gain qualified, career-driven young professionals as employees. Student bring with them exposure to cutting edge practices and technology, new insights and philosophies, flexibility and a thirst for knowledge. bRIdge has a particular focus on connecting students and employers from specialized fields such as Business, Science, IT, Technology, Health, Design, Engineering and Manufacturing. The bRIdge website allows employers to post paid or unpaid internships online and directly reach out to a vast and talented pool of students. College students and recent graduates can sign up and start looking for an appropriate professional learning opportunity in minutes. bRIdge is a program of the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA) and RISLA’s College Planning Center of Rhode Island. RISLA has joined up with Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Rhode Island (AICURI), the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education (RIBGHE) and the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce to bring together academia, business and community. If you have any questions about this program or if you need any assistance, please feel free to contact us.

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