University of California at Berkeley

Apply by Nov. 18 to Sponsor And Mentor a Staff Intern

 Applications are now available for faculty and staff to apply for funding to sponsor a staff internship. Mentors sponsor talented, motivated employees to become interns in their departments. The deadline for proposals is Nov. 18.

Now in its seventh year, the Staff Internship Program has helped place more than 80 employees in paid internships with campus mentors.

Program Manager Valerie Weller describes the program as beneficial on many levels: "The university benefits from well trained employees who develop organizational breadth. Employees benefit from the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities and to develop their skills -- opportunities for both professional and career development. And mentors value the fresh perspectives and energy interns bring to the work environment as well as the chance to work on projects that support critical needs on campus."

The Staff Internship Program selects and funds up to a dozen internships each year. Once the projects are funded, the program then helps mentors recruit and select campus employees for internships. Employees typically take a year away from their permanent jobs to take these assignments.

"The mentor's role is key to an internship's success," says Weller. "We are looking for excellent managers and supervisors who are reflective about their management styles, their professions and the institution. We are looking for mentors who are interested in teaching, coaching and advising interns as they work on internship projects or assignments."

The Internship Program defines success as meeting the dual goals of completing the internship project and successfully meeting the learning and career development goals of the intern.

Mentor John Cummins worked over the past 18 months with staff intern Michael Dang on a complex automation project in the chancellor's office.

"This project will change the way we manage information and the flow of work in the chancellor's office and beyond, moving from paper intensive to secure electronic processes. We are excited about this dramatic improvement to our organization. Michael's expert analytical and interpersonal skills were the glue that held the project together," said Cummins.

"In turn, Michael has been able to develop a wide professional network, strengthen his project management and technology skills, understand how senior administrators weigh divisional and campuswide issues to arrive at decisions, and learn a great deal about the chancellor's office. His new breadth of experience and skill will support his career development. Ours has been a very successful partnership."

Horace Mitchell, vice chancellor for Business and Administrative Services, believes that the Staff Internship Program is an asset to the campus and has provided additional funds to the program this year. "The success of the Internship Program rests, in large part, with the quality and commitment of experienced managers, staff professionals and faculty," he said. "Through the internship program, we develop and retain some of our most talented employees."


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