No matter the stage of your career, you have almost certainly been affected by the shifting dynamics of the post-pandemic workplace. While many Americans have made a successful adjustment to their remote work routines, others still anxiously await until they can return to the comfort of a “real” office. But for the millions of college students and recent college graduates, it is especially difficult to land an internship and/or find that first job in the wake of COVID-19.
Only a year ago there were more open jobs than available employees and opportunities were plentiful. Now, not only are there less paid opportunities due to the economic impact of the pandemic, but the nature of internships themselves has changed. Companies are restructuring their internship programs so they can still be mutually beneficial in a completely virtual format. Hiring managers have worked diligently to create remote interview systems and onboarding processes for interns. Furthermore, HR departments are finding ways to check in with interns (and new employees) to ensure they have guidance while making sure they’re providing value to the company. Imagine entering the corporate world for your first professional gig and everyone is virtual – the lack of a personal connection with colleagues is part of “work” that this group of individuals will miss.
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Despite all this it’s still possible for young people to find a paid position where they can thrive. Our team decided to put together a helpful visual guide for aspiring interns who may not know where to start amidst all the uncertainty. It’s important for both HR professionals and company executives to encourage and empower interns and entry-level employees by providing these opportunities whenever possible. While the present may still be uncertain, a company’s future still requires young talent.
Contributing author Gabrielle Gardiner is a Manhattan-based content writer and human resources/career development enthusiast. She enjoys sharing actionable insights about job hunting and professional development to empower people to succeed in their careers.