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Talent Feed Articles - Independence Blue Cross

June 2018

Independence changes its approach to internships with an eye toward more permanent hires

The Independence Blue Cross college intern program, which has provided students with meaningful work experience for more than 20 years, recently evolved as the company increased its emphasis on hiring former interns to become full-time associates.

“We restructured our college intern program as an opportunity for Independence to get top college graduates as full-time hires,” said John Clayton, Director, Diversity and Inclusion and Workforce Initiatives at Independence.

In 2017, 27 former interns and co-op students accepted full-time positions at Independence. With the new goal of transitioning interns to full-time hires, the program has become more competitive. In 2016, 103 students ranging from freshmen to seniors completed an internship at Independence. In 2017, the program only accepted applications from upcoming seniors, recent graduates, or graduate students; 39 of those applicants were chosen for internships.

To promote diversity and inclusion, Independence also partners with INROADS, an international leadership development organization that provides businesses with diverse talent for internships, and the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group, a local organization committed to fostering a more diverse group of lawyers in Greater Philadelphia. 

Miyumi Fair, a former intern who is now a Customer Service Representative, said it was Independence’s commitment to diversity and inclusion that made her realize she wanted to start a career with the company.

“As an intern at the Walk-In Center during the early years of the Affordable Care Act, I saw how we helped people enroll in plans for the first time. We made continuous outreach to the community,” she said. “What I like about Independence is that it’s not a company that only wants to sell you insurance.”

Throughout the 10-week program, interns are introduced to all aspects of the business. They participate in the same orientation session as full-time associates, then work closely with subject matter experts to learn how their area of interest operates within the larger organization.

“What separates Independence from other companies is its culture,” said Chase Roberts, a former intern who recently accepted a full-time Billing Analyst position. “I find it very welcoming and comforting to work here.”

Interns are encouraged to experience the work day as any other associate would. They have access to the onsite fitness center, are invited to attend meetings and events hosted by Associate Resource Groups, and participate in service projects with the Blue Crew, the company’s corporate volunteer program. The program also involves several professional development programs, such as team-building events, mentorships and weekly workshops.

Mari Meas, Business Specialist, Business Transformation, is another former intern who was hired by Independence.

“I sought an internship at Independence because I wanted to be a part of a company that focuses on the ever-changing health care market and makes a positive impact on its community,” she said.

Students of all majors can visit to apply for an internship. Ideal candidates are effective communicators, problem solvers, and active members of their campus communities. Applicants should be familiar with Independence and express a desire to learn there.

Submitted by:
Lytanja Jones-Beulah
Sr. University Relations Specialist, Human Resources
Independence Blue Cross

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