Register for LVEDC Internship Summit Sessions
By Colin McEvoy on September 1, 2020
A long-standing interest of many Lehigh Valley employers is how to start or grow an internship program with regional colleges and universities.
Limits on social interactions made necessary by the COVID-19 pandemic have further complicated employers’ ability to create effective internships that connect them with the new talent they need for sustainable business success.
To help employers navigate these unusual challenges, the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC), through its Education and Talent Supply Council, in partnership with Lehigh Valley colleges and universities, is hosting the second annual Lehigh Valley Internship Summit. This year’s summit consists of two virtual one-hour sessions, Sept. 10 and Sept. 17 starting at 10 a.m.
“The restructured Internship Summit for 2020 addresses head-on the challenges employers told us they face,” said Karianne Gelinas, LVEDC Vice President of Strategic Initiatives and Research. “We have presenters who have set up and managed successful ‘remote’ internships and positioned their organizations to recruit and engage interns in today’s unusual circumstances and into the post-pandemic economy.”
The Sept. 10 session will focus on establishing “virtual” internship programs. Presenters are Stacy Halliday, HR Recruitment Specialist and Program Manager for College Recruiting and University Relations at Air Products, and Alisa Lopano, Creative Services Manager for Discover Lehigh Valley. Both managed successful “virtual” internships this summer.
The Sept. 17 session will address branding and positioning to connect with and attract interns. Presenters are Lisa Brogan, Program Manager for University Recruiting at Olympus Corporation of the Americas, and Cory Stevens, Volunteer and Internship Programs Manager for ArtsQuest. Both use branding extensively to attract top interns to their organizations.
At this year’s summit, LVEDC will launch a Lehigh Valley Internship Toolkit. The toolkit contains as guide for starting internship programs, best practices, and a directory of internship-related contacts from the region’s colleges and universities. The toolkit will be available on LVEDC’s website for use by employers.
Internships have long provided an important connection among employers, potential future employees, and colleges and universities that prepare and train talent for our labor market.
One of the recommendations from LVEDC’s 2017-18 talent supply study was to strengthen connections between employers and talent, and between employers and educational institutions. From that recommendation came LVEDC’s first Internship Summit in the summer of 2019. Demand for the event was so great that advance registrations filled the venue to capacity in two days.
“Attracting and retaining top talent is just as important to employers today as it was before the pandemic,” Gelinas said. “We’ve structured the Internship Summit this year to respond to the changing reality for employers and we are continuing a variety of activities that help us understand and address Lehigh Valley’s talent supply needs.”
Sponsorships are still available. For sponsorship information, contact LVEDC Director of Marketing Liz Martin at [email protected].
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