3. Conduct Thorough UCM Onboarding
Covering the basics like how to keep track of hours, your university’s pay schedule and software setup might not be the most exciting part of the internship, but your student workers’ success depends on a solid grasp of these fundamentals. Leave adequate time to ensure your intern is confident clocking in and out and understands how they’ll be paid to put them at ease.
Don’t just escort your intern to their workstation — take them around the office to meet each UCM team member. If your UCM department is large, this might take a while, but it goes a long way to making your interns feel welcome and part of the team.
Set expectations for communication upfront. What platform should they use to get a hold of you and when? How often do you want them to check in? Whatever you prefer, make sure your interns know how to communicate with you from day one.
One of the first things to have your student workers do is document their goals for the internship. Ideally, this will be in a shared document like a Google Doc that you can both access and refer to regularly. You can save time by creating a standard goal setting template for students to put the skills they want to develop and the outcomes they want to achieve.
Before assigning a project, introduce your interns to your university’s brand. At the least, this should include access to your brand and editorial guidelines but ideally should involve a brand training session. There’s often a great deal of nuance and unspoken considerations when communicating about your university that isn’t always conveyed in brand guides, so introducing your student workers to your brand, content and social media teams is an important part of onboarding them to your brand.