The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is turning to Federal agency leaders to help promote its new governmentwide intern experience program.

In collaboration with other Federal agencies, OPM designed and established a new governmentwide intern experience program “that provides a standardized, high-quality professional experience for interns and supplements agencies’ existing programs,” throughout the summer, according to a June 27 memo from OPM Director Kiran Ahuja.

OPM is turning to agency chief human capital officers (CHCO) – as well as deputy CHCOs and human resources directors – at Federal agencies to help hit the ground running and promote the new program.

Ahuja asks agency leaders to “help spread the word to your agency’s interns, supervisors, and human resources specialists” to ensure they “make the most of these new resources.”

“Your leadership is critical to inspire the next generation of government leaders, and to achieve our ambitious internship and early career talent goals,” Ahuja stated.

The new intern program supports the “Strengthening and Empowering the Federal Workforce” priority in the President’s Management Agenda by attempting to improve early-career recruitment and retention for the Federal workforce, OPM said. It also aims to revitalize the Federal internship program, which has struggled for years.

Through the new program, Federal interns will have full access to high-quality training including self-directed sessions and virtual sessions on leadership, work skills, and general competencies needed for career progression and development. In addition, a panel of new full-time Federal hires from several agencies will answer interns’ questions and share their backgrounds. They will also have access to other events where they can hear from agency executives.

In addition to leaning on agency leaders to spread the word about the new intern program, OPM has created a new Intern Hub, which will be the central point offering answers to frequently asked questions and providing access to resources and a list of events.

This summer is the inaugural session for the program, but OPM hopes it will continue in the following years.

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Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.