Needless to say, the LSA Opportunity Hub—like the rest of the world—could not have anticipated the events that took place this spring and the disruption it would later create for LSA students set to embark on transformative internship experiences over the summer. At a time of year when most students are completing final interviews and are set to accept internship offers, the Hub switched gears and began working very closely with aforementioned students and employer partners to fully embrace a virtual-only summer of career opportunities. 

Internship Program staff worked diligently to identify and create new virtual internship opportunities and collaborate with internship hosts to transition in-person internships into a virtual setting, for both domestic and international positions. Helpful tools and guides were developed to assist students on preparing for effective remote work and how to pitch potential virtual internship opportunities to prospective employers.

Ashleigh Hardy is the Hub’s assistant director of internship programs. She explains, “We had to pivot on all ends to ensure that students were equipped with adequate information on how to proceed with their summer internship plans and to make sure students had back-up plans they felt comfortable with in the event their internship was canceled”. 

In an effort to help students continue to explore their industry interests but also understand the new realities on the ground, the employer engagement team collaborated with regional alum enagement managers to host virtual roundtable discussions that zeroed in on emerging trends within a particular industry. LSA students had a chance to hear from a panel of alums—industry leaders and experts in their field—and employers on how COVID-19 impacted fields like healthcare, economic policy, nonprofits, and data & technology industries. Students emerged with a clearer understanding of the new climate in those industries, how the workplace has shifted, and what kind of internships and jobs have been created as a result.

The overarching goal was to have these panelists provide a bevy of critical insights so that student attendees could actively make educated decisions about their futures. For students exploring career possibilities, knowledge about the working world and our global marketplace is critical.

If you or your employer would like to host an LSA intern in Summer 2021, please email us lsa-opphub@umich.edu and our Employer Engagement team will be in touch to explore potential internship opportunities.