Offering resources, referrals, consultations and counseling services on the issues that concern military families.
C. Eddy Mentzer
Program Analyst, Office of Family Policy
Do you know a college student or a recent graduate that has a passion for child or youth development and supporting the military community? If so, the Department of Defense would like to give them a leg up in the industry by giving them some practical work experience.
Through the Military Extension Internship Program, college students and recent graduates have a chance to apply their college education and gain practical work experience within the military’s quality, accredited child care and youth programs. Through work experience with military programs, interns will gain valuable knowledge and skills they can transfer to all aspects of their lives.
The program places interns in military child and youth programs around the world and allows interns an opportunity to observe industry best practices within military child and youth care programs.
Under the supervision of a mentor, interns work 40 hours a week during the 10- to 15-week program and will be able to develop a network of contacts in the industry. During their internship, interns are introduced to youth and child care programs where they learn to connect with families and engage children in different programs.
Starting off with just seven participants in a 2009 pilot program, the internship program has grown rapidly over the last four years and has placed hundreds interns on military installations. To get a feel for the intern experience, check out the stories former interns have shared.
A key goal of the program is not only to expose college students to careers within the military child and youth program arena but to actually place interns in these positions. To date, over 30 percent of eligible interns have been hired by military child and youth programs. And who doesn’t like getting a job straight out of college?
Military life comes with a lot of service and sacrifice, but it also delivers great rewards — and the Military Extension Internship Program is one of them. If you or a college student you know is interested in pursuing a career in child care, head over to the MEIP website to learn more about how you can get involved in the program. Applications for spring 2014 internships will be accepted from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30, 2013.