For today's college students and fresh grads, internships are a valuable experience. However, not all opportunities are created equal. Several internship programs do an excellent job of preparing students for their first entry-level job, while others fall short.
Just because the internship market is becoming more competitive doesn't mean you should jump at the first chance that comes your way.
If you're just starting your search for an internship, you might be unsure what to prioritize. Here are some qualities to look for in an internship:
1. Relevance to your career path.
The internship program you choose should, first and foremost, be related to your future job! That's not to say you can't change your mind later, but you should get a firsthand look at your potential profession as soon as possible.
One of the most critical aspects of an internship is receiving hands-on experience in a particular role or industry so you can decide if it's something you want to follow after graduation. When choosing an internship, seek one that will provide you with real-world experience; This will help you make well-informed decisions in the future and identify the ideal professional path for you.
2. A chance to separate yourself from the pack
Consider your future internship as a chance to set yourself apart from your contemporaries. Consider what you'd like to say to the recruiter about how you spent your summer (or fall or spring) semester at the next career fair you attend. Consider the experience and skillset you'll obtain to develop your professional brand.
3. Networking opportunities.
Your internship should introduce you to various people within the organization, allowing you to get to know them on a personal level and hopefully form relationships with them. Even if you don't end up working with the organization in an entry-level role following the internship, these folks can help you find other options in the sector.
You'll naturally work harder and appreciate what you're doing if you can feed off the energy of those around you. You'll naturally have a more pleasurable internship if you locate one at a firm where people are thrilled to come to work every day, and you'll be more likely to choose a similarly good work culture in the next phase of your career.
4. Access to mentors you can learn from
It's crucial to have mentors who can help you navigate the work environment you want to work in a while figuring out what you want to accomplish professionally. Look for internships with a built-in support structure that allows interns to speak with higher-level executives. You will gain more exposure within the corporation, but you will also learn from people who have worked in the business or sector for a long time and have a deep understanding of it.
5. Location and working hours
Is it more convenient for you to intern on campus or from home? Your financial condition may force you to make this choice. Also, more and more internships are becoming "virtual" these days, so keep that in mind while choosing a place.
Internship programs may and should be flexible when it comes to working hours. In addition to the internship, most interns are still in college and have schoolwork or volunteer responsibilities. If a company does not provide flexible hours or telecommuting choices to meet your schedule, it may not be a superb option for a college student who is already overworked. Consider interning during the summer instead, when your class and academic commitments are significantly fewer.
6. Know what will be your responsibility
Make sure you properly study the job description and obligations you'll be responsible for. You'll be putting what you do in this internship on your CV for graduate jobs, so pick something that reflects what you want to do once you graduate.
7. An opportunity to work on projects that matter
One key goal coming out of your internship should be the ability to say how you were able to make an impact. Having the opportunity to work on real-world projects is vital and a killer thing to tout in your following interview.
You can also gauge what kind of opportunity you'll have to work on other side projects. Go into the internship to make the most significant impact; This will help you walk away as the superstar for the summer and leave you with a potential job offer after the internship is over.
How can you learn more about the factors above before accepting an internship? Use websites like GlassDoor or InternshipRatings.com to conduct your study. Look over the reviews to see how previous employees feel about the company. Examine the benefits and drawbacks of working there to see if it's the right fit for you. Suppose you want to learn more advice for any self-development topics and consult with us! Also, follow us at Instagram @baikgp and @ayureadypodcast for more information and extra insights!