Effective internship programs provide an excellent opportunity to make use of talented people and assess them as possible full-time employees. These programs also provide an opportunity for managers to demonstrate to interns the potential of a career in local government administration.
The public health crisis of COVID-19 introduced many professionals, including interns, to the reality of a remote work environment. As local governments continue to evaluate the relationship between remote workspaces and organizational, staff, and community needs, they must remain committed to developing a future workforce of individuals attuned to the rapidly changing work environments.
ICMA's Management Internships: A Guidebook for Local Government, has been updated to include a new section on attracting, onboarding, and engaging remote interns or fellows. This internship resource was originally revised and updated in 2012 by combining and amending two existing ICMA resources, the Model Internship Guidelines and the Internship Toolkit. This process was supported by the 2011–2012 ICMA Task Force on Internships that reviewed these two resources by streamlining existing content and adding new sections where necessary.
The guidelines were adopted by ICMA’s Advisory Board on Graduate Education and the NASPAA Urban Management Education Committee in October 2003, stating a mutual interest in ensuring that high quality internships are available for MPA students.
Keeping with the goals of both original documents, this new update to the guide is intended to help local government managers and MPA programs work together to develop meaningful internship opportunities that benefit both the student and the local government.
Content highlights include:
- Choosing the type of internship.
- Attracting the best talent.
- Compensation and financial considerations.
- Supervising and evaluating interns.
- Top 10 best practices.
- Creating a remote internship opportunity.
- Testimonials from interns, fellows, and supervisors.