Intern Host FAQ
What are typical internship roles?
Among our Fellows, there is a wide range in prior work experience and interests, and so there is also considerable variety in the internship assignments. Past Fellows have worked with small startups, large retailers, professional service firms, food and beverage companies, non-profits, and advocacy organizations, among others. Internship roles have included research assistants, communications and social media marketing assistants, retail and frontline/customer service roles, administrative support roles, event planning, peer navigators, community engagement.
How long is the internship period? Do you have interns available at other times during the year?
The internship assignments are approximately 15 weeks, running from mid-March through mid-June. During that time, Fellows are on-site (or remote, depending on the operational setup of the host company) every weekday except Wednesday, which is set aside for Pivot programming. In some cases (retail, restaurants, nonprofits) the operating hours are such that interns work evenings and weekends; in those cases, the internship hours on other days are reduced to compensate.
We have one intake of Pivot cohort Fellows each year, so Pivot interns are available only in the spring. However, we do encourage our internship partners to consider hiring graduates and alumni for permanent roles, and will promote those opportunities to individuals who may be well – suited.
Is the internship host expected to pay the Fellows, and if so, how much?
For the duration of their internship assignment, Fellows receive an hourly stipend of $20/hr, paid for by the Pivot Program. We do ask, but do not require, internships hosts to make a donation to the program to help defray the costs associated with the stipend payments. Fellows are not considered employees of the host organization during their internship assignments.
Are the internship hosts expected to offer a permanent position at the end of the internship assignment?
Internship hosts are not required to offer participants an offer of permanent employment, although we do give preference during the placement process to companies that may be in a position to hire. The main goal is to give the Fellow a meaningful developmental opportunity, and the chance to form meaningful working relationships with colleagues and supervisors.
If both the Fellow and the host company/organization are interested in continuing the relationship, and a permanent employment opportunity is available, we would encourage the Fellow to apply. It is also our expectation that Fellows who have performed well during their internship assignments would be looked at favorably when applying for a permanent position.
What is the background of the typical Fellow – e.g., educational profile, past professional or vocational experience?
The typical Pivot Program cohort is small (10 – 20 Fellows per year) and highly selective. Fellows range in age from 25 to 65, and their educational and employment backgrounds are similarly varied. To be eligible for the program, a Fellow must have a high school diploma or GED; many have taken college level courses at some point, and a few Fellows have bachelors’ and associates degrees.
The ideal Pivot candidate is someone who has a clear sense of purpose, possesses strong interpersonal skills, has the aptitude for college-level work, and demonstrates leadership potential. Once selected to join the cohort, a Pivot Fellow spends the first four months of the program in class, developing the personal, professional, and technical skills needed to succeed in a business environment, as well as an understanding of the process through which new business opportunities are identified and developed. Many Pivot Fellows aspire to launch their own venture upon completion of the program, or at some future stage.
Resumes of all the Fellows are made available to prospective internship hosts at the start of the interview process. In addition, the Pivot leadership team will highlight those candidates whose skills, interests, and background suggest they are well-suited to the proposed role.