What Volunteers Are Looking for From Their Nonprofit Internships This Summer

June 28, 2021

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Nonprofit Internships: How to Attract Top Volunteer Talent

Young people and nonprofit internships are the future of the charitable sector. There is a dire need for new opportunities to help students and recent graduates take the next step in their careers. Professions in the charitable sector have incredible appeal to many young people who are either in school and need to commit hours to a co-op program or wish to build post-graduation experience.

To attract the best available volunteer talent, understand what potential volunteers are looking for and how you can offer the best internship experience possible. Currently, quality internships for charitable sectors have the potential to attract some of the brightest minds in universities and colleges. Creating the best possible internship opportunities can better support your charity and build connections that can develop exceptional talent and long-lasting partnerships.

Nonprofit Internships: Corporate Culture and Mentorship Opportunities

Internships are a valuable experience that can lead to rewarding career paths. Many HR managers in the charitable sector have likely had to build their experience the same way as a new intern, and professionals can often relate. At the same time, many have had a negative experience with an internship or volunteer opportunity. From a corporate culture perspective, the entire office will need to be on board with taking on a new intern to ensure it’s the most positive experience possible.

An internship with a clear roadmap to success can help new interns grow and develop their professional skills. While some of the work an intern completes might be tedious, there should still be an opportunity to be creative, make mistakes, and learn what it is like to work for a respected nonprofit organization. If your nonprofit has a great reputation and attracts top talent from universities or colleges, the experience shouldn’t be just “busy work.” Interns thrive on opportunity, and those who are truly motivated might surprise managers with their dedication, commitment to learning, and new ideas and perspectives.

Of course, hiring students comes with its unique challenges, and there will be times where there isn’t the proper fit between the charity and the intern. Working with interns is a great opportunity for staff to serve as a mentor to these young minds, but they should expect some challenges along the way.

Working From Home Nonprofit Internships: Flexibility and Remote Work Offerings

There was a time when internships were universally known for being unpaid, but times have changed, and there are many labor laws in place to ensure that interns make a living wage at the very least. Your internship offerings shouldn’t be about the money but the opportunity to grow and learn. However, keep in mind that talented interns will likely choose internships that can at least help them make ends meet and cover the costs of commuting in and out of the office.

Further, many interns are likely seeking out flexible work arrangements to help address their busy schedules. Between lectures, seminars, commuting, and probably working another job, your interns are already juggling several different commitments. Flexibility is a key theme that speaks to the needs of great interns. Allowing interns to find a balance between all these moving parts during this significant part of their life can ensure that the entire internship at your nonprofit is both positive and productive.

Remote or hybrid internship offerings can help strike a work-life balance for many interns and make your opportunities that much more appealing to busy students. HR managers can outline an internship opportunity that speaks to the growing trend of remote work but still sees these young minds in the office on a regular basis.

Ordering a Background check from OrderYourBackgroundCheck.com Nonprofit Internships: Conducting Background Checks When Hiring Interns

As you recruit top talent for your nonprofit, consider innovating your HR practices to help save money and ensure you hire quality interns.

Powered by ISB Global Services, OrderYourBackgroundCheck.com allows volunteer and intern candidates to order their own criminal background checks, allowing nonprofits to complete their due diligence while saving money. Now, you can request that candidates order and provide their own background screening credentials as a condition to accepting a position. Explore various service offerings and ensure that your nonprofit protects those you serve and maintain its reputation.

Contact us directly or visit OrderYourBackgroundCheck.com to learn more.