Across the nation gatherings are being canceled. Some of these gatherings are simply events, while others are jobs. One aspect of a job that many Missouri State University students must do before graduation is an internship. However, due to COVID-19 many of these are being canceled.
“We have heard from both students and employers that their current or future internships have canceled because of COVID-19,” said Marjorie Stewart, assistant director of the Career Center.
Haley Damkroger, a junior majoring in risk management and insurance, is one of the students that had her internship canceled. She was going to be an intern at Lockton Companies, one of the world’s largest independent insurance brokerage companies.
Damkroger said she was very frustrated to have this internship canceled. The internship was supposed to start on June 1, which she thinks that the virus should be gone by then. However, the company explained they had been out of the office since March and were not ready.
Stewart said not all hope is lost with the internships being canceled. There are still many fields that are needing people to fill positions. Although these may not be your major area of expertise, they can still add experience.
“The industries that seem to be hiring include construction, education, supply chain, healthcare, social services, law enforcement and IT,” Stewart said.
Although there are still some internships out there, Damkroger now has different summer plans. Her new focus is to get more money to pay the bills for the future.
“I am blessed that I still will have a job this summer,” Damkroger said. “The past three summers I’ve worked at a glass bottle manufacturing plant called Ardagh Group.”
However, while she is working she will still have to worry about getting the credit that she would have gotten from her internship. She was supposed to get three credit hours. Those are now being replaced with a course that will count towards her major degree.
Damkroger is not the only student that has run into credit issues. Stewart noted that there were other students who have experienced the same problem. The solution is held on an individual basis.
“We are working with academic departments and registrar on how internship cancelations are affecting class credit,” Stewart said. “These are all being handled through the specific colleges and academic departments in which students’ academic major is aligned.”
Taking other classes has proven to be a solution for these missed internships, but that is not the only solution, according to Stewart.
“There are virtual internships posted in Handshake and on individual employer websites,” Stewart said. “Virtual internships will provide the appropriate resources for the intern to work remotely — they may be able to work in a part of the world they wouldn’t be able to before.”
Stewart said students should not be discouraged by this new problem and to be sure to still include this internship on your resume. Just put beside it as canceled due to COVID-19.
If students need assistance dealing with their internship they can contact the Career Center at CareerCenter@MissouriState.edu or 417-836-5636.