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Learning for Life: Importance of Internships for Non-traditional Students Lynn Brandt, MSE, GCDF Career Counseling and Internship Coordinator Adult Degree.

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Presentation on theme: "Learning for Life: Importance of Internships for Non-traditional Students Lynn Brandt, MSE, GCDF Career Counseling and Internship Coordinator Adult Degree."— Presentation transcript:

1 Learning for Life: Importance of Internships for Non-traditional Students Lynn Brandt, MSE, GCDF Career Counseling and Internship Coordinator Adult Degree Program University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

2 Who am I? University of Wisconsin – Green Bay Total Enrollment – 6,211 Non-traditional student enrollment – 27% Total Enrollment in Adult Degree Program - 650

3 Who are Non-traditional Students? 25 years-of-age or older Delayed post-secondary education Work at least part-time Have dependents Taking care of parents Financially independent from parts Veterans Displaced Workers

4 Why do an Internship? A Typical Student Story: “When I first graduated from college, I thought, “ok, great I have my B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies, emphasis in Human Development. I can finally work in the career of my dreams: being an advocate for runaway teens. As I researched the jobs I really wanted, I saw that I was lacking one very vital thing, experience. All of my experience had been in the business world. In spite of it having always been my dream, I didn’t have any recent or tangible experience in a field related to my dream career. This could have been avoided if I would have done one simple thing…completed an internship.”

5 Road Blocks Career changers have little to no experience in new career field Flexibility of internship hours Unpaid internships/financial barriers Difficulty communicating benefits of internships to students Fear of Failure

6 Creative Solutions: Career Changers have little to no experience in new career field Volunteering Join Professional Societies Workshops, conferences, conventions, seminars Job Shadowing Internships

7 Creative Solutions: Flexibility of Internship Hours Virtual Internships Winternships Shorter internships during academic year or summer Weekend/evening internship opportunities

8 Creative Solutions: Unpaid Internship/Financial Barriers Great Lakes Higher Education grant awarded to UWGB which allows payment of interns who are at non-profit or public service agency Intentionally build relationships with companies who offer paid internship opportunities Internships at place of employment

9 Creative Solutions: Difficulty Communicating Benefits of Internships to Students Develop marketing resources from employers Academic Advisors and faculty need to be supporting efforts to promote internships Start promoting internships the moment students step in the door! Use electronic resources

10 Creative Solutions: Fear of Failure Pretty Self-explanatory…We grew up trying NOT to fail…message sent loud and clear FAILURE IS BAD. Avoided an F on an exam, only tried out for sports teams you thought you had a relatively good chance of making and compromised yourself in the context of a relationship just to avoid failure.

11 Steps taken to create Internship Program Created Internship Manual specific to Adult Degree Program Set up database to track internship sites and contacts Plan outlined to begin creating program Develop Relationships - Network with potential internship sites: do site visits, meet one-on-one with staff responsible for placing interns

12 Steps taken to create Internship Program Create internship-specific information documents Created informational site on Desire-to-Learn (D2L) for students to access at their convenience Career Counseling offered directly through program with expertise geared toward the non-traditional students Career Development Plan for every student entering the program

13 Steps taken to create Internship Program Development of Internship brochure specific to targeting businesses Use team approach to reach out into area businesses: create internship opportunities specifically for non-traditional students Offer Career/Internship Fair geared toward non-traditional students/Possibly a virtual Career/Internship fair Internship requirements create opportunity for reflection and synthesis of major learning outcomes Capstone seminar for major to offer alternative Experiential Learning component

14 Questions and Conversation…


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