"If an artizan has undertaken to rear a child and teaches him his craft, he cannot be demanded back.
If he has not taught him his craft, this adopted son may return to his father's house."
- The Code of Hammurabi, 1760 B.C.
CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- Babylonian law establishing contract terms between a master and apprentice might be mankind's earliest written reference to workforce development, according to Michael True, director of the Internship Center at Messiah College in Grantham, Pa.
Job training evolved through the millennia into the guilds of Medieval Europe and the internship programs of today, which True said are important to both the intern and the business. He was one of the speakers Thursday at a Workforce Development Initiative breakfast sponsored by the Greater Chambersburg Chamber Foundation.
Students need the real-world experience an internship offers, and businesses benefit from this pool of motivated, temporary and part-time workers, True said. Businesses and governments cannot use interns to replace regular employees and employers should define tasks for the interns and provide them the tools -- desks, computers, etc. -- to accomplish the work, he said.