Information for Educators
A message from the president/CEO of The Internship Depot.
For a number of reasons, not the least of which is the emerging research about the need for a new set of ‘not-so-soft’ skills that our young adults will need to be successful in post-secondary education and work, we determined it was time to reinvent the traditional internship experience. For years, research has pointed to the importance of academic success in challenging coursework as the key indicator of college success. But new research has added more information about what works and what doesn’t as students work their way through college, and we have taken that challenge to heart. Learn More.
So, in fact, we did nothing less than reinvent the internship experience! We transformed the decades-old model from an exercise that provided almost no preparation and relatively passive experiences for a limited number of teens into one that:
- offers a much longer preparation period (featuring effective, dynamic, and experiential learning activities),
- requires a much shorter (two-week) internship commitment,
- is an instructional (unpaid) experience that unfolds online (students are never on the business site), and
- removes the constraints of cost and management time that the traditional internship model put on employers, thus opening the doors to thousands of students who might want to serve an internship.
Most importantly, we put the burden for securing internship Hosts (businesspeople who agree to remotely ‘manage’ an intern) on the student, and in doing so, we shifted the emphasis from learning during the internship itself to learning during the process of acquiring the internship.
That acquisition process puts demands on the student that go light years beyond the old internship or job application/interview scenario. Not at all coincidentally, our internship model exactly mirrors the hiring/work practices that are on the rise today and will be the norm in tomorrow’s Gig Economy. Learn More.
Our Rainmakers Internship Preparation Program (RIPP) prepares high school students for tomorrow’s workforce and helps teens take their first steps into the Gig Economy, so they can start their careers early and seek competitive employment opportunities. If they are successful in that ‘human cloud,’ they can earn money in high school and college that will help them achieve their income/education/career goals. Perhaps more importantly, data reveal that anywhere from 70 to 85 percent of adults secure their jobs through their personal networks. We provide opportunities for students to start building their networks before they leave high school.
In addition to the RIPP for high school juniors and seniors, we offer the Stormy Wannabees Advantage Initiative for high school freshmen and sophomores, which includes our exclusive G.R.I.T. curriculum. We also offer The First Rung (lessons about the importance of school performance that will help eighth graders gain ground in middle school and their early high school years). All these lessons deliver essential information to students in those most critical of years so middle school students can become high performing underclassmen/women and underclassmen/women can become high-performing upperclassmen/women.
We expect students who participate in any of our program offerings to learn and exhibit maturity, accept new responsibilities, and maneuver outside of their comfort zones. Successful participants receive certificates of completion, recommendations from business executives, and free lifetime memberships to The Rainmakers Club, an online community through which they can begin building their professional networks and support incoming Rainmakers Candidates.
Simultaneously, we worked hard to ensure that our RIPP activities align with and support the goals that most districts have adopted for high school students as they prepare for education after high school, for work, and for life. We believe our RIPP activities support school/district goals in as many as ten different ways as noted below.