JAMESTOWN - James-town Community College is encouraging students to gain "real world" experiences by including internships in their summer plans.
"Among the promises we make to our students is connecting them to their goals," said Marilyn A. Zagora, vice president/dean of academic affairs. "Internships provide direct connections to career fields and complement classroom learning in ways that will be incredibly valuable in an increasingly competitive job market.
"Among the most compelling reasons to complete an internship is to test your interests and skills in a particular career area," Dr. Zagora said, "but that isn't the only reason. You will also be strengthening your college transcript and your resume and creating professional contacts and references that can pay off in the future."
"This summer we're intensifying our efforts to provide internship opportunities for students in diverse areas of study," said Nelson J. Garifi, Jr., executive director of marketing and academic initiatives. "While students in many of our academic programs are required to complete internships or field experiences at some point during their studies, we believe all students can benefit from experiential learning.
"Summer can be an ideal time for students to pursue internships as their schedules often provide greater flexibility," Garifi added. "We currently have placements available for both paid and unpaid internships in areas including science, education, and business." JCC staff will also work with individuals to customize internships for specific interests.
Citing data from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, Garifi noted that employers report that 62 percent of new college hires had internship experience and nearly half of employers said they offer higher starting salaries to new college hires who have internship experience.
According to Garifi, JCC also encourages students currently attending other colleges and universities to enroll in JCC's credit internships this summer.
"We're already placing students from three different colleges who will complete their internships while home for the summer and then transfer the credits earned back to the institutions they attend," he said. "This can provide a significant cost savings to the students as JCC's tuition is likely to be the more affordable option."
Students completing credit internships through JCC must have successfully completed at least 24 credits and earned a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0.
Students interested in enrolling in summer internships as well as employers willing to host interns are encouraged to call JCC's experiential learning office at 338-1381 or 800-388-8557, ext. 1381, or visit www.sunyjcc.edu/summer.