Virtual accommodations for the WORX Internship Program will allow students to receive valuable career exposure within the safety of their home.
WORX is a program that partners students with professionals associated with the school to provide summer internship opportunities to rising seniors. During their junior year, students interested in the WORX program create a resume and fill out an application to move forward to the interview process. If selected and matched, students can accept an internship in a field of their interest to intern with during the summer.
“I have heard lots of good experiences from people that have done it in the past and I would like to gain some work experience,” junior Kai Robinson said. “I think I would probably interview for an internship that is involved with medicine of some sort.”
WORX is designed to find internships every year that are a good fit for each student based on their application. Alumna Emily Delgado ‘20 shadowed a pediatrician during the summer of 2019 when she was considering a career in medicine but wasn’t sure if she would like it.
“By participating in WORX, I was able to see and experience a day in the life of an actual doctor from the moment that they walk into the doctor’s office to when they finish with the last patient of the day,” Delgado said. “Because the pediatrician I shadowed saw many patients each day, I was able to see how medical care was given to children of different ages including new born babies. I loved my internship and because of it, I realized that I absolutely want to go into the medical field and I am currently a pre-med student in college.”
The program goes above and beyond in hope of finding internships that will provide a unique learning experience for student’s interest. WORX partners with the school’s Fine Arts Network board in search of more untraditional, artistic opportunities.
“We’ve had students beyond the set of films, taking pictures for a company’s website [or] helping them revamp some of their social media…,” WORX and College Guidance Coordinator Katherine Montgomery said. “Oftentimes, one of the things we ask about [is] extra skill sets. I would encourage students who are outside of those like main well-known industries to rank some of those other industries that they’re interested in learning more about higher up.”
By requesting more unique fields and skill sets, students are more likely to receive an internship suited to their hobbies and interests or one that sets them apart. And students may feel more comfortable when applying to colleges if they know they are passionate about their major.
“We’ll find that students will either be more solidified in what they want to do for their major based on their internship work,” Montgomery said. “I think sometimes, even to their best interest, they’ll find that they maybe weren’t as interested in that.”
This year, as a result of many companies operating virtually and added safety precautions, a select number of internships will be held virtually.
“It really depends on what the employers are comfortable with,” Montgomery said. “So I would say that I think everyone would like to do it in-person, if possible. Some companies have not fully gone back to their office settings so they are still remote themselves.”
Potentially, virtual internships may face a challenge for students, preventing them from applying. However, students should still take advantage of the valuable learning opportunities.
“I think that WORX provides such a unique experience to students, and while it may be virtual this year, it can still be educational and have an impact,” Delgado said. “I recommend students take advantage of such a unique opportunity like WORX because it offers such valuable advice on things such as job interviews, professional communication and insight on various career specialties.”
But numerous students are still jumping at the chance to participate.
“I think that participating in person is obviously better than online, however, I think it is still worth participating because getting experience even if it is online would be beneficial to me,” Robinson “Also, even if it is online, you can still develop helpful professional and work-related skills that you can use for the rest of your life.”
With the world changing so rapidly, students will get a sense of what could be the new normal for many companies.
“I think [there are] valid concerns about the opportunity to be in-person versus remote, but one of the things that the WORX Internship opportunity does is provides students with at least a sense of working remotely right now,” Montgomery said. “In the real world we are probably going to see more and more companies moving to a remote system, saving money on office space and changing the opportunities so that they don’t have to move their employees to a different state or different cities, so I do think that no matter if it’s virtual or in-person you’ll learn a lot.”