Boomers As Interns & Volunteers

Executive Internships. Returnships. Career Reengineering Programs. Call it what you like, we're seeing a growing trend in Baby Boomer internships and volunteer programs. Once reserved for students and entry-level job seekers, these programs are attracting the increasing supply of unemployed mid-career professionals. As the economy worsens, Baby Boomers are eyeing internship and volunteer opportunities as a way to learn new job skills that will keep them up to date with their profession and allow them to break into new careers. Employers in both public and private sectors are seeing the advantage of hiring skilled, mature interns and volunteers to meet their current needs and fill their future talent pipelines. Here are some examples of the growing number of programs specifically geared to Baby Boomers:

  • AmeriCorps, thanks to the 2009 Serve America Act, now dedicates 10% of all new volunteer slots to people 55 and older.
  • Civic Ventures, a think tank focused on Baby Boomers, spearheads a variety of cause-related career and volunteer programs for individuals 55 and older.
  • Babyboomers.TV, a website start-up targeting Baby Boomers, hires mid-career interns, offering each a $100 weekly stipend.
  • Investment bank Goldman Sachs provided a pilot internship program last year offering midcareer women a chance to return to the finance industry.

How will your organization be able to leverage the strengths and expertise of the Baby Boomer population? What opportunities exist to engage them as volunteers and interns?

Want more insight and tips for engaging volunteers in your organization? Register now for our July 16th online seminar, "Generational Differences in Volunteerism - Recruitment & Retention Strategies for Nonprofits".