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In this Issue: Government internships

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Big ideas and budget cuts are not a recipe for success. Perhaps this is why many local governments are looking to interns for help. These youthful, educated workers aren’t the stereotypical, coffee-retrieving recruits; they’re bright, capable individuals seeking to gain public-sector experience with a desire to make a difference.There are countless benefits to hiring interns, as well as great ways to recruit just the right person for the job. This e-newsletter will discuss both topics. Keep reading to find out more.

Benefits of internships

With some dedication and clear goals, internships can provide a win-win.

  • Get a fresh set of eyes: Interns bring a fresh perspective. They may question processes, challenge old methods and offer a better way of doing things. Encourage this behaviour and you may end up tapping into the talent that lies within these bright-eyed professionals.
  • Employ a champion to spearhead a solution to a problem: Oftentimes, local governments are able to identify problems—but have few human resources to oversee the solutions. Providing an intern the opportunity to lead a project gives them meaningful work, while at the same time giving your agency and those it serves the talent it needs.
  • Create a potential career path: Interns can become permanent members of your team if the fit is right. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 58.6 percent of interns result in full-time hires. The Government of Ontario has an incredibly successful, comprehensive two-year internship program that sees an average of 80 percent of interns land jobs immediately afterwards. So, the time and resource savings in recruitment for your agency could be substantial!

How to recruit the right interns

Now that you know the benefits of hiring ambitious young people, you need to know how to recruit the best of the best. One way to ferret out the leaders is by building relationships with area professors, advisors and other faculty.

Offer to speak to a class about your agency and its services, participate in career fairs, and build relationships. Come armed with recruitment materials—a grab bag containing your business card magnet, a jotter and a stylus pen for notes—plus a detailed job description outlining potential projects and goals can help candidates see the significance of work they may be doing.

Hiring interns and using their skills to the max could be the perfect solution for getting much-needed projects up and running. Interns can offer your agency a new perspective, boundless talent and the potential to come aboard full-time. Give it a try—it just may be your ticket to success.


Wogan, J.B. “Big-City Mayors Tap Grad Students for Their Teams.Governing the States and Localities. N.p., 22 Jan. 2015. Web. Retrieved 18 Feb. 2015.

5 Reasons You Should Hire an Intern — and 3 Reasons You Shouldn’t.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 06 Dec. 2011. Retrieved Web. 16 Feb. 2015.

Mosley, Ashley. “Interns Make Better Entry-Level Hires: 5 Reasons To Bring Them On.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 25 July 2013. Web. Retrieved 18 Feb. 2015.

Willoughby, Allyson. “The Savvy Startup’s Guide to Recruiting Interns.” Entrepreneur. N.p., 25 Apr. 2014. Web. Retrieved 18 Feb. 2015.



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