There’s much more to being an intern than getting coffee and making copies all day. In fact, an internship is one of the greatest investments a student can make for their future. Here are six reasons why you should consider getting an internship.
Gain Valuable Work Experience
There are just some things that can’t be learned in a classroom or from a textbook. That’s why getting an internship prior to your first post-grad job is so beneficial. Not only do internships give you hands-on experience in your chosen field, but they also allow you to learn in an environment where it’s okay to make mistakes and encouraged to ask questions.
Give Yourself an Edge
Nowadays, it’s all about the “it” factor. Beyond a strong GPA and extracurriculars, employers look to hire candidates that can show valid work experience and a portfolio of past projects. With a quality internship listed on your resume, you automatically become more marketable to prospective employers.
Get Comfortable in an Office Environment
If you’ve never been in an office environment before, being thrown into one for the first time can be intimidating. Working as an intern gives you time to get comfortable with your surroundings. You’ll pick up on how to interact with professionals, learn how to tackle standard office tasks and gain more confidence in your abilities overall.
Network, Network, Network
In the working world, it’s all about who you know. Internships are an amazing way to connect with other interns in similar majors, learn from and build relationships with those around you and grow your network of professional contacts. You never know when someone you interned for years ago can offer career advice or act as the stepping-stone to another internship or job opportunity.
Earn Money While in School
Not all companies pay their interns, but if you can find one that does, you’ll be able to gain industry-specific experience and make money at the same time. You can then use that paycheck to fund other college expenses. Also, be sure to check with your department head to see if your internship can qualify for college credit, too.
Learn What Works for You
One of the best reasons for a student to get an internship is to learn more about themselves, their strengths and their weaknesses. Internships act as the perfect trial period for you to start narrowing down exactly what you do and don’t want in a job. If you can envision yourself in similar positions someday, then you know you’re on the right track! And if you end an internship feeling like it wasn’t the best fit for you, then at least you learned that along the way.
All in all, getting an internship isn’t just about adding another bullet point to your resume. By taking advantage of internships during your college years, you’ll experience personal and professional growth that will prepare you for a more successful career in the future.