The Impact of COVID-19 Restrictions on Internship Processes


Andrea Adams
University of the District of Columbia
Anthony Mazza
University of the District of Columbia


Researchers in different disciplines worldwide have documented the direct impacts of the COVID-19 virus (COVID). Along with the direct effects, the impact of COVID restrictions has changed how students use traditional career readiness programs. Moreover, COVID restrictions act as a "career shock" for student job-seekers. Career shocks are extremely disruptive events that cause individuals to rethink career choices and reflect on their career plans. The global implementation of COVID restrictions has arguably created a "universal" career shock beyond the career shock theory's original foci. Expanding the career shock analysis to include universal disruptions requires a reevaluation of job-seeking methods and opportunities. As a part of rethinking job search methodology through a career shock theoretical lens, this paper focuses on how academic program professors and career center personnel collaborate to support job-seeking students. This research initiated an educational innovation due to the decline in internship availability impacting external interview placement. A non-placement pilot will assist students in completing traditional internship requirements while providing an in-class experiential learning opportunity. This Pilot Course was created as a direct response to the Federal Workforce Development Strategy announced in November 2020. It will use the success factors of adding a non-placement Work-Integrated-Learning (WIL) opportunity within the Practicum course and employ an androgogical, "Differentiated Instruction" design. The study concludes by discussing the future implications of practicum-based internships.

UDC Faculty Senate
September 8, 2022
Online ISSN