Everyone has the fear of graduating from college and trying to start a career while not having enough experience. Every job application you read wants at least two 2+ years of experience within that specific field. Even if a person obtains a job they might feel that they are not qualified, considering everything they’ve learned is in a classroom. As beneficial as college may be, nothing teaches an individual more about their field than actually working in it. This is where internships come into play. An internship is a temporary position to acquire on-the-job skills and training. All internships vary; some may be paid and some potentially may be unpaid. Whether your college or university requires an internship for your specific degree, I would advise every student, no matter the field, to find an internship.
The first benefit is simply that an internship provides the opportunity to learn more and get more experience in a field. That is the obvious benefit, but there are many more. Secondly, an internship gives the opportunity to decide if a person has chosen the correct career path. If someone cannot handle or does not enjoy working in an industry for ten weeks then they should know this is not the right career path for them. An internship gives you the chance to experience what really goes on in the work place, and if you can see yourself doing this for a majority of your life. The third benefit would be that you can help benefit the company or organization you are interning for. An intern can use their up to date education and apply that in the workplace. Doing this can possibly teach other employees newer methods or even benefit the company in a great way. The fourth benefit of an internship is the networking that takes place along the way. Working in an actual professional setting can give a student a huge advantage compared to the students not interning. Networking and building connections can put you ahead of the game. In a world were obtaining a job is nearly impossible, connecting with people and getting to know them will only benefit you. An internship gives you the opportunity to do so. Finally, the fifth and final benefit is that an internship can lead to a job, whether that job is full-time or part-time it can still be a great stepping stone fresh out of college.
A suggestion I would make for anyone interested in finding an internship is to be confident and be yourself. Apply for the internships that best fit you and do not get discouraged. It is normal to not hear back from companies or organizations. Make sure to apply yourself in school and to keep your resumé up to date. I have had three internships and have learned new skills in each. The experience and knowledge you gain can only benefit you.
I wish you all the best,
Matthew D. Haddad