Can I Fire an Intern?

What’s the line between “teaching” an intern and treating an intern like an employee? Does it ever make sense to fire one, or should you just suck it up until the internship ends?  How far am I expected to help an intern if they are underperforming? Also, our student interns receive course credit. Would firing make them flunk the class?

To read my answer, click here: Can I Fire an Intern?

Leave your own in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “Can I Fire an Intern?

  1. Great presentation of how to deal with this tricky issue especially with today’s younger generation who have had less exposure to interaction with others and may lack the knowledge of how to cope. This way you are informing them with the constant communication of real job skills beyond computer technical skills.

  2. What do you mean by underperformance? Interns are, by definition, there to learn about a topic or industry for educational credit and participate in meaningful work related to that. Outside of legal issues (ie: threats, harassment) or not showing up, or deliberately not engaging, or something equally gregarious, what DOES underperformance mean for an unpaid student?

    It can’t be the same measuring stick as an employee.

  3. Great points. I love that the majority of the article was about you as the manager being clear with communication. I’ve managed a lot of interns, some better then others, and it always shocks me when someone gets their first intern and starts complaining about how much work they are. That’s kind of the point of unpaid internships in most places.

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