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Google internships are staying virtual in 2021

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Every day during her Google internship, Lauren Snyder would start her morning by grabbing a cup of coffee and getting ready for work. She’d even put on a pair of shoes to feel more office-ready. She logged on from her apartment in New York and focused on her project around security systems for Google’s Data Center team.

At the same time across the world, Ishani Srivastava, an intern working on the software engineering side of Google Workspace in Bokaro Steel City, India, would end each day by crossing off the items on her to-do list and revisiting an old hobby: sketching and painting. With the stresses of a pandemic going on outside her door, she spent each evening unwinding with her art supplies, which helped her embrace a passion that didn’t involve school or work.

teo images next to each other. Image one is Lauren sitting at her desk in her apartment. Image two is Ishani holding up paintings of a dog and a landscape.e

Lauren and Ishai in their intern-from-home spaces.

For the first time in Google history, thousands of students from 43 countries started their summer internships virtually. We hosted more than 200 orientation sessions across the globe and held more than 300 events throughout the summer to help interns connect with their peers, hear from Google leaders, and engage with various teams.  

As we continue to prioritize health and safety during the ongoing pandemic, we’re confirming that Google internships will be virtual again in 2021. By making this call now, we hope to give interns ample time to prepare for working in a virtual environment. 

New opportunities in a virtual environment

Shifting to a virtual format this past summer was a big challenge, but it presented us with opportunities to be more inventive with our programming and how we stay connected to one another.

To help make activities more accessible to our global community of both interns and employees, every intern had the option to be paired with a mentor or join a coffee chat with one of the 2,600 Googlers who volunteered to host one of these sessions to answer questions about work, life or whatever was on their mind. To help our interns focus on their well-being while working from home, we created a “development hub” filled with tools and resources specifically created for thriving during remote work. We also kicked off more virtual social events to make sure interns were meeting just as many Googlers and fellow interns as they would have in the office — if not more. We launched an intern-only version of Hash Code, our team-based coding competition, which gives students the opportunity to solve big, real-world engineering challenges.

At its core, what it means to be an intern at Google has not changed, and we were excited to find 97 percent of interns were satisfied with their experience — the same as the previous year, when we were all in the office.

We look forward to applying much of what we learned earlier this year to our 2021 program. As we get closer to next summer, we'll continue to share more details with interns about what they can expect from their virtual internship. 

Applications are now open. If you’d like to join us, apply on our careers page.

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