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How to Make Your Internship Experience Worthwhile


We’ve all heard those horror stories of internships that have gone terribly wrong. I’ve seen things online saying “They made me run to Starbucks every day to get them coffee” or “One intern was supposed to be working in the public relations department of a New York fashion conglomerate but wound up spending the summer reorganizing the makeup supply closet.” These internship situations minimize the value that the intern brings to the company and do not allow the intern to get the necessary professional experience to grow.

This is NOT how your internship should be and thankfully for me, my experience interning at C&A Industries was awesome! For first time interns, an internship may seem unknown but luckily there are ways to overcome some of the uncertainties. According to Forbes, it’s good to bring up your concerns and expectations for the internship during your interview. Having a pretty good idea of what the internship will be like and how you will be evaluated is important. Don’t be afraid to confirm some things that you talked about with your supervisor, via email.

Once you start your internship there are many things you should be thinking about to get the most out of it. Networking is a great thing to do at your internship or any job for that matter. In my experience, I worked with several different interns on a daily basis and was able to build strong relationships. Sometimes you have to get out of your comfort zone to meet new people but pushing yourself to do this pays off. The networking skills and relationships that you develop can last your entire life.

Another thing that you should focus intently on during your internship is your performance and impression on your superiors. Remember that although you aren’t a full-time employee for the company, you still need to act professionally. Learning as much as possible allows you to better yourself professionally and stand out against your peers. Also, if your manager is happy with your performance at the company they might invite you back for another internship or even offer you a full-time job.

Internships are a great way to experience working for a company to see if it would be a good fit for you. This should be a time when you determine some things you want in a company and find out what things you don’t like in a job. If you are interested in other areas or positions in a company, don’t be afraid to tell your supervisor and see if they can move you around. Hopefully your internship will be as good for you as mine was at C&A Industries. If you absolutely dread going to work every day, then maybe it’s time to start looking at other job opportunities.

Sources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/susanadams/2014/06/18/how-to-make-the-most-of-your-internship-3/

https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/insights/ten-tips-building-stronger-networks-work-life

Nick MoorNick Moor is an intern with Aureus Medical Group’s Student Outreach Program. He attends the University of Nebraska – Lincoln studying International Business and plans to graduate in May 2017. He loves fishing, traveling, and spending time with his friends and family.

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