MAX for Intern Rotation Collaboration

I’ve recently come to realize how difficult it is for federal interns to coordinate rotations across different agencies. It’s not that bosses oppose it; quite the opposite, they encourage it. Rather, it’s just tough to line up different agencies’ policies for developing memorandums of understanding (MOU) via email and phone.

This difficulty is one of the biggest obstacles to rotations getting off the ground, and I know from talking with others that I’m not the first to experience this. (I know many of you in Young Government Leaders have felt this pain).

The federal government should either use the MAX Federal Community for government-wide intern rotation collaboration or build a site specifically for it. I favor the first option since it already exists; the site is very secure; already has 52,000 people; and is stress-tested up to a quarter million people.

A main page could be called Government-Wide Rotations, and then different pages should be set up for collaboration between agencies. For example, the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) could have an intern rotate with the Center for Disease Control (CDC). The page under Government-Wide Rotations could be labelled OSD-CDC Rotations, and pages under that one would be restricted to the main parties involved. The allows for fast, secure, and easier file sharing and communication among different parties.

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I’d even add that more than intern rotations it should have all detail opportunities which often exist at middle and senior levels.

For PMFs, they are technically supposed to be posted on the website but the best way to find rotations is actually the PMF listserv

Toughest part isn’t the tech it’s about herding cats. Could even be a great feature on GovLoop.

I’ve always seen details as a great opportunity for offices to bring in talent quickly and staff to get new opportunities but it’s always been hard to get the info. Some agencies do a great job like EPA of dispersing the info within their agency but most do not

Terrence (Terry) Hill

Personally, I am not a big fan of the MAX website. It is not the most user-friendly website and I’m skeptical of the number of users. I’d prefer that a website like GovLoop published a list of opportunities for details. It could be sort of like a experience to match interested folks up with opportunities. Some agencies are trying to do this internally. I’m not sure what the optimum solution is, but I don’t think that MAX is the best solution. Plus, who knows when funding will be cut for this website, like it was for FedSpace.