GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — West Michigan Intern Connect, an event that connects interns with business and community leaders, is back in person this summer.

The event will take place on June 15 from 12:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. at GLC Live at 20 Monroe in Grand Rapids. Tickets cost $30 and it’s open to any student or young professional.

People who register will also be able to attend virtual events on June 22, July 6, July 20 and Aug. 3.

Rachel Gray, the executive director of Hello West Michigan, said it’s valuable to be back in person. The event will teach interns important skills.

“Our virtual skills are important as well and for the young professional now they really need to be able to survive in a hybrid environment,” Gray said Tuesday. “The remote work we had during the pandemic was not really remote work: That was COVID remote work. When you work from home it’s still very important to go out and meet with people and to network and build a name for yourself and so intern connect and this professional development conference is really all about teaching interns how to do that.”


The event will tackle things like the job search, confidence in the work place and budgeting.

It will start with a keynote conversation with Katherine Baker, manager of diversity, equity and inclusion at Meijer. The discussion will largely address the unease young people entering the workforce may feel post-pandemic.

“Really, what we’re going to be talking about is turning concerns and turning these unknown situations that young people are going into, into confidence,” Gray said at the WOOD TV8 Live Desk Wednesday morning.

Following that will be a discussion surrounding personal finance that will happen in a game show-like format. Afterward, there will be a networking break that will give interns an opportunity to make connections.

As the day continues on, two panels will be held. The first, hosted by a recent graduate, will provides attendees with the opportunity to learn more about questions and concerns they may have when searching for a job.

“Everyone wants a peek behind that curtain. They wanna know what’s happening in the HR office, they want to know, ‘What does HR want to see from me?’ as I am searching for a job,” Gray said.

The second panel will close the day and Gray says it’s the most popular session: a young professional panel on “adulting.”

“It’s spilling the tea of what it’s like to be a young professional,” Gray said.

Questions will be taken from the audience.

For more information and to register, go to