Diversity is an essential component of the workforce. However, Companies are focusing on this aspect only on entry-level and permanent jobs. Internships are getting fame and going mainstream, but there are still some significant developments left in respect of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). Courses are the base level of organizations where new careers and future leaders are formed.
Silicon Valley is a glorious place for interns where internships come with high and lucrative salaries. The whole internship environment in Silicon Valley is called Internapalooza. The internships teach the new entrants of industries and make them adaptable to more severe roles in future.
DEI efforts are the next step to take Internship culture to new heights. Minorities often face oppression or obstacles of some form in the workplace. This can be eliminated by not making any minorities in the office. The companies also benefit from such an environment through increased productivity and competitive advantage over other orthodox businesses.
Barriers to Equality
Racial equity is affected most by the gateway barriers applied intentionally or unintentionally by organizations on the selection of candidates. Unpaid internships are one such example which appeals only to the wealthier class. Those who cannot afford to work for free show resistance in applying. And in most cases, as per a study, the socioeconomic status of candidates also shows there racial status. Unpaid internships limit the available options and lead to racial inequality.
Minority groups, who have faced oppression and discrimination whole life develops imposter syndrome. They doubt their abilities, no matter how good they are. Imposter Syndrome makes them feel less confident and discourage them from applying. This is a significant gateway barrier.
The feelings of insecurity may continue after selection into the internship. A company needs to tackle this issue throughout the internship period. It is human nature to feel isolated when you are alone of your kind. This makes candidates invisible, and their growth and contributions are slowed down. An inclusive culture is vital to give every employee a voice and bring out the best from each of them.
Creating an Inclusive Internship Environment
Improving diversity in internship program has to start from the management level. The leaders or supervisors of interns should be from different ethnicities. This gives moral support to new coming interns. Having diverse leadership will also increase the intake of various candidates. The job for increasing DEI does not end here.
Along with diverse management, the workplace environment needs to be open and modern. Businesses should make a community, organize events that include every intern, and lets them voice their ideas. The main motive is to reduce the psychological barriers of new candidates. The aim is to remove any imposter syndrome present in minority group by giving them a chance to prove their mettle. An inclusive workplace comes with a sense of belonging and a raised motivation level.
By adopting these approaches and putting efforts in DEI, companies can achieve a dream workplace which has a unified and nurturing workforce.