Ohio Internship And Co-op Appreciation Day
A Guest Column by State Senator Joe Uecker
April 14, 2015
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The winter months have passed and the signs of spring are all around us. This is the time of year when most college and high school students are planning ahead for the summer. One of the best ways for young people to spend their summer months is to invest in their future by participating in a summer internship or co-op program.
For students, a summer internship or co-op can be great way to earn some money and learn about potential career opportunities. Internships and Co-ops are also a great way for students to discover real-world job prospects by applying their academic studies toward a temporary work experience.
Internship and co-op experiences are commonly done on a temporary basis in collaboration with an employer that can assign projects that enhance the students learning experience and simultaneously benefit the company or institution that employs them.
For companies, training new full-time employees and providing salary and benefits during the training process can be a costly undertaking. This is especially costly if the employee ends up a poor fit for the organization. Hiring internship and co-op students can be a cost-saving solution that helps to advance the long-term interests of the institution by hiring one of these students on a temporary basis, allowing them to demonstrate their work-ethic and learn more about the company.
Internships and co-ops often lead to full-time employment after graduation. These opportunities give students a chance to learn far more than what can be taught in the classroom. Internship and co-op programs also teach important  “soft skills” like time management, critical thinking, leadership, problem-solving and much more. These positions look great on resumes and demonstrate to future employers that a potential hire possesses the prerequisite professional experience necessary for full-time employment. 
Last year, I joined my colleague, Senator Bill Beagle, in supporting Senate Bill 227 designating the second Tuesday of April as “Ohio Internship and Co-op Appreciation Day". The day is intended to raise awareness of the value of internships and co-op opportunities in Ohio as well as encourage businesses throughout the state to offer additional program opportunities. These programs give employers unique access to untapped talent without long-term commitments.
In Ohio, we have created more than 280,000 new private sector jobs since January 2011 and companies are providing new opportunities every single day. Taking advantage of the abundant internship and co-op opportunities is a great way to gain job skills and experience, often leading to good paying career opportunities.
To learn more about available internships or to search for talented individuals to join your company, please visit OhioMeansInternships.com. New internships and co-ops are posted weekly.
As always, if I can ever be of assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact my office by phone at (614) 644-8082, by e-mail at Uecker@OhioSenate.gov, or by writing to Senator Joe Uecker, 1 Capitol Square, Columbus, Ohio 43215. 

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