Solving the Internship Imbalance: Opportunities and Obstacles

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This paper discusses 4 proposals to ameliorate the internship imbalance: (a) doctoral programs should create affiliated internships, (b) the training community should continue to consider reevaluating the sequence of training and the function of the internship year, (c) new and innovative internships should be created that offer international training opportunities or focus more heavily on research or policy components, and (d) the training community should come together to promote and adopt a shared social responsibility initiative. The latter proposal includes multiple components, such as increasing lobby efforts and advocacy for funding of graduate training, continuing efforts to obtain reimbursement for intern services, and beginning to take steps to regulate doctoral program class sizes. Each proposal includes a discussion of both the opportunities and challenges the proposals represent. The paper concludes with recommendations for the entire training community to consider for implementation. This paper contributes to the rich literature on the internship imbalance and aims to reenergize and otherwise move the conversation forward.

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