*Editor’s note: This blog originally appeared on the Indiana INTERNnet blog.
By Marissa Smith
Indiana INTERNnet focuses on talent retention through increased work-and-learn experiences. More than a decade ago, it began the tradition of celebrating internship excellence by launching the annual IMPACT Awards. Each year, the program continues to grow in size and success.
The IMPACT Awards, presented at an annual luncheon, have traditionally honored three categories: Interns of the Year, Employers of the Year and a Career Development Professional of the Year.
Intern of the Year Awards recognize individuals who have had a positive impact on the organization for which they intern. Three interns will receive this award, one for each of the following sub-categories: high school, college and non-traditional. High school and college interns must be enrolled in school during the time of the internship for which they are nominated. The non-traditional category is for interns who were not students at the time of their internship or were 26 years old or older during their internship.
Jerica Mitchell of Indiana State University took home the award for the Intern of the Year (college category) at the 2018 IMPACT Awards. She made such a strong impression on her supervisors at the Indiana Minority Health Coalition (IMHC) that the organization adjusted its budget in order to extend her internship. Mitchell’s goal of becoming the executive director of a non-profit aligned perfectly with her work at IMHC, fueling her passion for the role.
The Employer of the Year category honors two organizations (a for-profit company and a non-profit organization) that have created a quality internship program within the state of Indiana. At the last IMPACT Awards, Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance was named Employer of the Year in the for-profit category, having completely recreated its 13-year-old internship program in 2017 and effectively doubling the number of interns hired.
The Career Development Professional of the Year category honors one full-time employee of an Indiana academic institution who has significantly aided the creation or enhancement of internship programs in the state of Indiana. This person is a true student advocate and coach on internship professionalism and career development. Nathan Milner of Indiana Wesleyan University was named Career Development Professional of the Year in 2018. Among other feats, he facilitated a program to provide wages for up to 20 students interning at start-up companies, a clear demonstration of his advocacy for students.
Due to the growing number of nominations, Indiana INTERNnet is excited to introduce a fourth award category: Intern Supervisor of the Year. Who’s eligible? Internship supervisors who work directly with interns may be nominated. The award will be presented to the nominee who has gone above and beyond the standard expectations of a supervisor.
Indiana INTERNnet will celebrate its 13th round of awards, nominees and winners on February 26, 2019. More details on the ceremony will be posted soon. To submit a nomination, visit the IMPACT Awards nomination page.
Winners will be chosen by a panel of impartial judges. Submit your nomination(s) in any or all of the categories by October 31. Employees can even nominate their own organization’s internship program.