News - Interns Important to Northeast Ohio Employers

This year, 85% of Northeast Ohio employers that offer formal internships will either maintain or expand their programs, according to the results of the 2013 ERC/NOCHE Intern & Recent Graduate Pay Rates & Practices Survey. The report, an annual collaboration between ERC and the Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education (NOCHE), highlights internship practices of Northeast Ohio businesses, and the results suggest good news for thousands of college students in the area as they look to make the most of their summer.

“Businesses across the state are focusing more attention on internships and co-ops as a way to develop a robust talent pipeline,” says NOCHE Executive Director Ann Womer Benjamin. “At the same time, colleges and universities are providing resources and support for internships and co-ops as a bridge between classroom and career, critical for students to make a smooth transition into the workforce.”

To Pay or Not to Pay?

While some employers offer unpaid internships, many do offer a stipend or an hourly rate for the work that’s performed. “Aside from the potential legal issues that could arise from unpaid internships, there are many reasons to pay interns,” says Marty Mordarski, ERC’s director of research & membership. “First and foremost, if you want to hire the best and brightest students, chances are they’ll also have other offers from employers who do pay. You could be at a significant competitive disadvantage if you don’t.”

Across the board, intern pay rates were slightly higher compared to the results of last year’s survey, with hourly wages hitting their highest levels since ERC and NOCHE first launched the survey in 2009. In particular, pay rates for interns in Engineering, HR and Operations all continue to show a consistent pattern of growth from year to year.

Average Rates of Pay for Interns (2013)

Internship Field

Average Hourly Wage





Human Resources


Information Technology




Non-Profit/Human Services


Operations Intern


Performance/Studio Art Intern


Research Intern (Non-scientific)


Research Intern (Scientific)


Sales/Customer Service


Additional Resources

To download the full survey report, including rates of compensation for interns and recent graduates across 11 fields of study, please visit or contact ERC at 440-684-9700 or

ERC and NOCHE will also be hosting an upcoming program titled, Interns: Trends & Best Practices in Management and Pay.  The program will be held on Thursday, May 16th, from 9am to 10:30am at the ERC Workplace Center. Topics will include trends in pay, best practices for managing your interns and tips on maximizing your return on investment - all straight from the experts at NOCHE and supported by an in-depth analysis of data from the 2013 Intern & Recent Graduate Survey by ERC. To register or for more information, call ERC at 440/947-1300 or visit:

NOCHE: Connecting business and higher education