Kevin Bettencourt, Manager of Human Resources at Interplex Engineered Products, Scot Jones, CEO of Groov-Pin Corporation, and Jeff Baxt, Communications Manager of the Philadelphia Education Fund, weigh in on their experience with interns.
1. What is the main reason you host interns at your organization?
“To educate today’s youth and/or adult workers about the positive employment opportunities still available in today’s manufacturing sector.” – Kevin Bettencourt
“It’s a two-fold purpose; while we recruit interns to support the development/communications team, we also want to offer students some real life work experience to get them accustomed to the work environment within an organization – Jeff Baxt”
“Access to a stream of candidates by exposing students to the challenges and opportunities in manufacturing.” -Scot Jones
2. What are the top three ways your organization benefits from interns?
“1) Refines how we explain what we do. 2) Stream of new ideas and skills for problem solving. 3) Awareness of the company.” – Scot Jones
3. What is the most challenging part of structuring an internship program?
“Making a short internship meaningful both for the intern and the company by balancing exposure to the business and projects where the intern can contribute.” – Scot Jones
“Currently, as my work schedule has been curtailed, I have to coordinate my schedule with interns so I am on site the days the interns are in the office.” – Jeff Baxt
4. Have you had a favorite intern? What about that person most impressed you?
“Yes, our most recent intern had a great work ethic and knew how to use common sense.” – Jeff Baxt
“Each has been different. It is great going over the stories that they can tell in interviews about their experience. We shoot for three good stories.” – Scot Jones
5. Do you pay your interns? Why or why not?
“Yes. At Interplex we believe in providing more then just a positive work experience. Compensating our interns provides a financial incentive for seeing the internship through and reward for positive performance.” -Kevin Bettencourt
6. Who do you think benefits the most from interns?
“Internships are mutually beneficial.” -Kevin Bettencourt
“The interns benefits the most.” – Scot Jones
7. What are five words you would use to best describe interns?
“The future of our business.” – Scot Jones
“Energetic, eager, flexible, adaptable, refreshing” -Kevin Bettencourt
“Collaborators; partners; enthusiastic; eager; resourceful” – Jeff Baxt
8. How did your internship program get started?
“I offered a position to a family acquaintance.” -Scot Jones
9. What is the most challenging part of supervising interns?
“Determining the needs of each part of the team (development and communications) and what kind of support they need; e.g. recruit interns with experience in both or just one area?” – Jeff Baxt
“Keeping in mind how new they are to the work environment. Keeping a flow to their relatively short experience. Tailoring the internship to be of benefit to both company and intern. Convincing interns they can take the initiative.” – Scot Jones
10. How do you use internships as a recruiting tool?
“To attract new talent to the organization and jump start long meaningful careers.” -Kevin Bettencourt