Oatey Co., a manufacturer in the plumbing industry since 1916, announced that, in consideration of the COVID-19 crisis, its annual summer internship program will be virtual.

“As we navigate the ongoing coronavirus situation, our priority is ensuring the safety of our associates, while at the same time minimizing any disruption to our customers and our business,” said Dalithia Smith, vice president of human resources at Oatey. “With that in mind, we are pleased to move forward with our annual internship program virtually and offer our interns a robust learning experience, as we continue to serve our customers during this unprecedented time.”

Oatey’s summer internship program, now in its fifth year, provides college students with hands-on work experience across multiple facets of the plumbing and manufacturing industry, including marketing, human resources, compliance, engineering, sourcing and customer service. In addition, Oatey interns benefit from networking, professional development and community service opportunities to help prepare them for life after college.

After a competitive application process, Oatey’s 2020 interns include students from Miami University, Baldwin Wallace University, Ohio State University, Walsh University, Case Western Reserve University, The University of Akron, Cleveland State University and John Carroll University. In addition, Oatey will host high school interns at its Cleveland manufacturing facility as part of the Jumpstart Emerging Talent Network summer internship program in partnership with Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.).

The virtual internship program will leverage Oatey’s state-of-the-art workplace collaboration technology to keep interns connected with their teams, projects and fellow interns while they work from home.

“Now more than ever, it’s critical that professionals entering the workforce are adaptable and comfortable in a variety of work environments, including working remotely,” Smith said. “Being a part of Oatey’s virtual internship program will further prepare students to enter the modern workforce.”