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Entrepreneur Tip #1: Start An Internship Program

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by David Garland in David's Blog

David’s Blog: The Rise To The Top Entrepreneur Blog
Entrepreneur resources. Entrepreneur education. Everything Entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneur Tip #1: Start An Internship Program

So you want to start your very own internship program?

Here are a few reasons an internship could be rocking for your company:
1. You can attract the best college students who WANT to learn and gain experience FOR FREE. They earn college credit which is great for them.
2. The youngsters can bring high energy and a blank slate mindset to your company. You can help mold them.
3. How do you know you are good at what you do? Well, if you can TEACH it to college students, THAT is a very good sign! Experts not only know, they teach.
4. Even if you don’t have “real” employees, managing interns is great practice and a test of your managerial skills. Perhaps you will even hire one of your interns down the line!
5. Four words: More work gets done.

…and you can make them get you coffee, just kidding…but seriously coffee. Veronica, where is my coffee?

Why is this great for an intern?:
1. Gain valuable experience. Entrepreneurial companies are usually small which means you will get more quality work to do.
2. You won’t be bored. Start-ups and new companies have PLENTY for you to do. Trust me (although it may not always be pretty!).
3. Great for your resume and potential future employment. Valuable internships are great talking points in interviews, especially if you helped get something off the ground. Plus, you could end up working for the company you intern for. Cool!
4. Entrepreneurial companies put the “real” in “real world” experience. You won’t be filing papers all day. You will be doing and seeing everything firsthand. From extreme highs to brutal lows. You will learn the art of hustle you can’t learn in the classroom.
5. It beats the living crap out of sitting in a classroom all day and you are getting credit!

So, what do you need to do to start an internship program? Here are the simple steps:

1. Create an internship program description by answering your own questions:

-What you want to get done? What will the intern be doing all day? Write it down.
-Picture your perfect intern. What skills will they have? Any particular major? Hint: This is a good opportunity to think outside the box. Even if someone doesn’t have the “perfect” major, that could be a GOOD thing meaning they are much more of a blank slate and can learn to do things your way. What you want is someone that wants to learn quickly.
– What is the time commitment? Is it full or part time? How many interns are you looking for? Can they work from “Home” or will they be in your hous… Do they need to have a car and laptop? Are these interns by semester? Year? Summer?

2. Contact Universities:

Each University/College has a Career Center. I would recommend calling up or sending an email. Just go to the school’s website and send them your packet along with a short description of your company and a link to your website. Each college has a slightly different system but the important thing is to make sure the internship is posted online. Inquire about how to post it yourself or request that it be posted for you. Colleges are always looking for great opportunities for their students!

Also, make sure to check with the Entrepreneurial programs (if applicable). Here is a great entrepreneurial internship program at Washington University in St. Louis. Or you can email Chris Miller at

Of course make sure to post your internships on your website as well!

3. Conduct Interviews:

Each University will have options on how you want to be contacted. I just choose the simplest way which is just having your email posted at the bottom of the internship description online so applicants can directly email me their cover letter and resume. For you weird people who don’t want to give out your email, just make a new one such as or

For the resumes and emails you like, setup an interview. If you don’t have a big office, try a coffee shop. Bring questions and get a feel for who you are hiring. Make sure to ask about all the requirements you have (i.e. laptop) so you don’t get burned later.

4. Chose your interns and you are off to the races:

Yippy, hooray! Let the fun begin. At the end of internships, if you loved your interns, ask for referrals to their college friends.

And just like that…you will have a caffeinated workforce!

Live Passionately! – David Siteman Garland – The Creative Opportunities Specialist and Entrepreneurial Chameleon-

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8 Steps to Turning What You Already Know into a Successful Online Course

The 8 step process to the successful with online courses + free gifts for attending!

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