Comparison of the Department of the Army, Navy and Air Forces contracting internship programs
Moody, Kristen A.
Rendon, Rene G.
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The Department of Defense has experienced a significant loss of acquisition professionals because of attrition and workforce reductions. Interns have been hired to curtail the loss, but the dwindling number of experienced acquisition personnel has left little time to train the new entrants while still meeting complex mission requirements. In an effort to maintain a professional staff that is qualified to fill critical positions in contracting, the Air Force, Army, and Navy have each created contracting internship programs. The research purpose is to: (1) identify whether the DoD contracting competencies are covered consistently among the Army, Navy, and Air Forces contracting internship programs (2) determine if and to what extent these defense organizations are incorporating industry best practices into their internship programs and (3) recommend program improvements to ensure consistent coverage of the DoD contracting competencies and that industry best practices are incorporated. Study results suggest the defense contracting internship programs are not consistent in their coverage of DoD contracting competencies and that each program has best practices that are not fully implemented. Alignment and standardization of the defense internship programs are suggested to ensure consistent coverage of DoD contracting technical competencies and that industry best practices be fully incorporated.
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