In the waning hours of 2019, Indiana INTERNnet (IIN) officially reached the milestone of 10,000 completed internships between its students and employers. The true number is likely quite a bit higher as post-internship follow-up pales in comparison to actual connections and experiences.

But the number is significant. That’s 10,000 opportunities for students and others to learn about Indiana communities and careers. That’s 10,000 instances of enthusiastic talent being put in place to help solve workplace challenges. And we know many of those interns became full-time employees and long-term contributors to Indiana’s economic success.

The 10,000 number will grow, as will IIN’s offerings. Continued expansion beyond college interns will bring more high school students, as well as adults looking to advance or change careers, into the fold. We will add to the experiences, facilitating longer-term opportunities, up to and including apprenticeships. On the shorter end of the time scale, job shadows for students and teacher externships are on the horizon.

The same technology that has helped make the 10,000-plus internship connections possible will allow for this expansion. That is accompanied by a high-touch approach – working directly with students, employers and educators throughout the state.

Internship excellence will be celebrated through the 14th annual IMPACT Awards on Feb. 18. Even greater successes, however, are yet to come. Learn more at www.indianaintern.net.

Ryan Twiss is a Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership Indiana INTERNnet board member. Mike Slocum is Indiana INTERNnet executive director.

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