In today’s competitive workforce, finding a job without experience can be a real challenge and internship is a good way to boost employability. Typically, internships are unpaid and do not have the benefits of a regular employee, such as insurance, allowances or vacation leaves and also does not guarantee employment. However, it provides an opportunity to create a professional network and gain the much needed experience to be confident and competent to do the regular job.
Internships are not only beneficial to the student, but also prove valuable to the hiring agencies. The valuable contribution of interns cannot be denied. For instance, the interns working on the print processing unit of San Diego Sheriff’s Crime Laboratory have helped eliminate backlogs by working on the print processing cases with exception to the homicide and drug cases.
According to senior latent print examiner Linda Wright of San Diego Sheriff's Crime Laboratory, the internship program which has been around for over 15 years has great success in helping interns getting employment with law enforcement agencies with the crime scene work they are pursuing. In addition to print processing, interns can respond to crime scenes and job shadow scene techs for homicide cases and death investigation cases. They are able to attend autopsies and do write the crime reports on their observations. With the internship, students gain various exposures to the work environment and have an opportunity to develop skills that couldn’t have possibly all learned in a classroom.
San Diego Sheriff’s Office interns are considered volunteers, so applicants may not be at school to join the agency as long as they meet the requirements. There is a minimum commitment of 6 months and usually last for one year. The program provides opportunity to someone who has applied for jobs, but just can't find the internship for a competitive edge.
The ideal candidate is someone who can communicate well and knows how to handle criticism. Also, someone who can multi-task with some computer skills like Photoshop and Word is a plus.
Applications are accepted through online only and the process is highly competitive. Jobs are hard to come by in their area so someone willing to relocate to another area is very welcome. They would like someone who will be marketable after the internship. Usually the agency receives more than 50 applications each year. Of those, only 15 are invited to the crime lab for an interview and just six of them go through background checks.
For more information on Latent Print Development internship at San Diego Sheriff's Crime Laboratory, you may visit their internship page.