Now that we are beginning to experience summer-like weather, it’s a good time to remind employers of the do’s and don’ts of summer internships.
We still find that many organizations are not sure if they are required to pay summer interns or not. If not paying summer interns, what are the requirements to ensure compliance with wage and hour laws?
Here are my quick summer internship best practices:
- Create a formal internship program with scheduled start and end dates;
- Maintain records of hours worked;
- Emphasize and put into practice the training and supervisory characteristics of the program;
- Ensure that the internship isn’t being used as a substitute for regular, paid employees or as a trial period;
- Provide a written offer letter to the student intern, stating that the internship is unpaid and that a job is not guaranteed;
- If an intern is not enrolled in a college, junior college, community college or university, they will not meet the educational requirements;
- When publicizing the internship, state that applicants who will receive college credit are preferred; and
- Best advice – pay interns minimum wage!!
Summer internships are wonderful for both employers and the summer intern. Ensuring the internship meets all wage and hour regulations is critical in ensuring success for both the intern and the employer.