Don't Let Misinformation Hold You Back in Finding the Right Internship

Get the Facts

Internship Myth:

The best internship is one that pays the most.

Internship Fact:

Getting paid to do an internship may be a consideration but there are many other factors that should be considered prior to accepting an internship.

Internship Myth:

Since hiring is down due to the economy, I should accept the first internship I am offered.

Internship Fact:

In order for an internship to be valuable it’s important to identify your goals for doing the internship.

Oftentimes internships can turn into full-time jobs and if the company or job is not of long-term interest, you may have been wasting your time not getting the right experience for the job you hope to do.

Internship Myth:

I should always seek out well-established internships with big name employers.

Internship Fact:

Although completing an internship with a well-know firm can have its advantages in some industries, many small organizations provide top notch internship programs that may provide a broader range of responsibilities.

Since many employers use their internship program as a training ground to hire it’s next round of employees, it’s important to assess each opportunity to be able to fully compare the positive and negatives of each experience.

Internship Myth:

Employers only hire interns to make coffee, file, and answer the phone.

Internship Fact:

There are many employers out there who provide valuable opportunities for students to gain the relevant knowledge and skills they will need to be successful in a career field of their choosing.

Internship Myth:

Employers will not hire me if I do not possess all of the skills I will need to become successful on the job.

Internship Fact:

Internships offer learning experiences that provide students with the knowledge and skills they will need to get hired in the field. As long as the student possesses transferable skills, such as: interpersonal, communication, organization, computer, leadership, and team-building, employers will often jump to hire them as an intern.

Internship Myth:

I need to make money over the summer so I can’t afford to do an internship.

Internship Fact:

Not all internships are full time. Many students will combine a part-time internship with a part-time job in order to get the experience while making money at the same time.

Internship Myth:

I live in a small town and there are no local internships available.

Internship Fact:

Nothing could be further from the truth. There are 3 basic ways to find an internship:

  1. Networking
  2. Check out online databases and local newspapers
  3. Prospecting

Networking:

Networking with everyone you know from family to friends, previous employers, faculty, etc., in addition to checking out The Career Development Center at your college to see if they have an active alumni / parent network for you to tap into can help you build a strong professional network.

Checking out online databases:

There are a wealth of internship opportunities listed online. The Career Development Center at your college should be able to help you find resources that will help you get an internship.

Prospecting:

By checking out the local newspaper, Chamber of Commerce, or organizations of interest online you can identify companies of interest and then call them to see if they are interested in hiring a college student for an internship or summer job.

Some of the best internships can be found by prospecting. Once you know what you want, you can search companies that offer specific job opportunities and start out by doing an internship.

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