It is about that time in my major where all the kids in classes relative to my own are preparing for their internships. This is a big step for any college student, because it is a taste of what is to come in the future. It is a chance for them to get a feel of what they will be doing (hopefully, if the economy changes and jobs are easier to find) on a daily basis. As for me, I have a little less than a year until I’ll be applying for my internship, but I want to make sure that I get the most out of my experiences as an intern. I am looking to be very prepared for whatever job I get, after all I would probably want to keep it.
According to the Cornell Business School, the five best piece of job/internship advice are, “Know what you are getting into and speak up from the start, be proactive, do your homework, it’s the little things that count, and network, network, network.”
Students need to look at internships as a way to gain knowledge, not just to be the person who gets coffee for everyone. While you may have to run some errands, you may get the opportunity to work under someone that does exactly what you want to do years down the road. More often than not, they will want your help with the important stuff, because how else will you learn? Like Groove Job says, “Just think, no more classes, no more papers to write, no more tests to study for. This is it, how exciting! Look at this as an opportunity to work with a full-time after the completion of the internship.” The internship is the final step before being throw into the real world and living the nine to five, or for most people at least.
There are different types of internships that a person can be involved in. According to Wet Feet, the main six are, cooperative education, field experience, practicum, service learning, externship, and apprenticeship. Visit the pervious link to learn more about the different types offered.
When applying for your internship, make sure you are fully prepared. Treat this like the job it is! You need to have a prepared cover letter and resume, prepare some questions so that the interviewer knows that you have done your research about the company, and of course your wardrobe. An internship is your gateway to the real world. By succeeding in an internship, you have the ability to network, which helps get you a career. You may even be fortunate enough to be asked to stay with the company. Regardless, be positive, attentive, responsible, dependable, and reliable. Show the company your intern with that you did not just spend the last few years of your life wasting away in the classroom, but that you do have something to offer the field. Don’t be afraid to speak up, but try not to step on any toes. And finally, prove that you have what it takes to make it!