What Students Really Think About Internship Testimonials

Internships give students their first taste of professional work life and can equip them with invaluable skills not learned in school. An internship provides the perfect opportunity to learn how to navigate company structures while networking with colleagues who could provide that one connection they need for future employment opportunities.

Create SMART learning goals together, and help interns understand how their internship experience will contribute to their professional careers in the future.

What I Learned

One of the primary advantages of an internship for students is getting a glimpse of what their career path may entail, while also developing valuable professional skills and learning how to navigate their working environments in general.

Student Voice respondents consistently listed internships as providing them with skills necessary for professional success, including time management, communication, and other soft skills that will assist their careers.

One important lesson they gained from their internships was how to work as part of a team. Many employers place great value in interns as they bring new energy and perspectives; helping to bridge the gap between older employees and recent graduates. Therefore, many offer training and mentoring opportunities for interns.

Students often struggle to strike a balance between work and life when interning. While being punctual and hard working are essential components, knowing when it is acceptable to take time off to relax or recharge can also be important. Students should become self-aware in order to identify what their strengths and weaknesses are and how they influence job performance.

An internship is an invaluable way to explore whether or not a certain field is right for you, yet it’s often not as glamorous as imagined. An internship at a fashion company might sound appealing at first, but behind-the-scenes requires discipline, long hours, and hard work – something every fashion enthusiast might dream of experiencing!

Internships can be great opportunities for students and employers alike. Our survey revealed that almost half of companies experienced positive effects from hiring students; those that did were more likely to rehire them than those that didn’t; furthermore, 81% of community college students said internships helped prepare them for jobs after graduation.

How I Learned

Internship experiences offer invaluable lessons in adaptability and growth, particularly for nonprofit interns tasked with using their talents to meet organizational needs. Nonprofit interns frequently need to adapt quickly when faced with unexpected challenges or take on unfamiliar projects, requiring them to think on their feet and take risks to complete projects even when outcomes may remain uncertain or unknown.

Anderson recommends setting realistic goals for your internship experience to ensure success in any given role and gain greater self-assurance when entering the job market post-graduation. Students who take this approach tend to thrive more in their roles and will have greater assurance when entering postgraduate job markets post graduation.

Internships offer students an invaluable opportunity to not only gain insight into specific careers but also build soft skills such as time management and communication that will be essential throughout their professional careers. According to Anderson, internships provide “an unforgettable hands-on learning experience that connects classroom knowledge to real-world application and helps develop key capabilities needed for success in any chosen field”.

Finally, internships help students build professional networks that will last them throughout their careers. Many of the students interviewed for this article reported gaining employment thanks to connections made during an internship – an essential lesson for anyone seeking a job in their area of interest.

Experts advise interns to network early and often. Interns who show an eagerness to learn are more likely to impress their supervisors and create relationships among coworkers – potentially opening doors to full-time jobs after graduation.

Students were often informed about how they secured their first internship through college career centers, professors or job search websites. Violet Schuttler of Franklin Pierce University in rural New Hampshire secured hers after being referred by one of her professors; later she found two additional off-campus internships through this same method.

What I Did

Many internships require significant commitment from students, with some lasting up to 20 hours per week for three months while others being more flexible such as summer internships or weekend assignments. Interns should come prepared to work hard as contributing members of their team; and know they can seek assistance when needed if new to this type of organization or industry.

Internships provide students interested in specific fields with an opportunity to experience daily life within that profession, which can help them gauge whether it suits them as a career choice. Furthermore, interns gain experience without incurring as many costs in their careers due to full-time employment in that area.

Internships also introduce students to professional networks that can lead to future jobs and internship opportunities. Some of the most successful interns can credit mentors or coworkers with helping them land their current position; others cite how connections made during their internship led them to another company or even another school’s internship position.

However, for students without access to an excellent internship experience, these relationships and opportunities may remain out of their reach. Our Student Voice survey revealed that one-quarter of those seeking internships did not receive them; this figure was consistent across gender, race and institutional affiliation (public vs private and Pell Grant recipients), suggesting there may be additional support needed for all students looking to participate in internships.

As they were not offered internships due to various obstacles such as having to continue working full- or part-time jobs to cover tuition and living expenses or no transportation available (particularly virtual experiences), many were prevented from engaging in this experience that could provide them with their first career-building experiences. Without better systems in place for connecting students with internships and mentoring programs, these obstacles will likely prevent too many from getting this valuable experience that could open doors for them in the future.

Overall Experience

When asked to rate how well their college assists them in finding and landing internships, nearly four of every ten Student Voice survey respondents gave it an A rating.

But this is only part of the picture; students still face many barriers, whether financial, socio-cultural, or institutional. Some struggle with heavy course loads that leave little time for outside jobs or internships; other may face pressure from family or social connections to remain in school; still others lack resources or connections necessary to secure employment after graduating.

Students also report that schools often fail to adequately support and promote internship opportunities, or don’t provide guidance needed to be successful (e.g. networking techniques, resume/cover letter preparation guidance). They face barriers unique to their internship such as limited supervision on site or being unable to advance within a company.

colleges can ensure interns get the most out of their experience by connecting students with mentors, offering career-related workshops and creating internship courses with both academic and hands-on content. Colleges should work closely with employers in setting clear expectations as to what the intern should learn – including soft skills such as professionalism and time management – throughout their internship experience.

Interns who are enthusiastic and eager to learn can enhance their own success by meeting colleagues, arriving on time, asking for additional work, and offering positive energy and strong work ethics within the workplace, according to Dowling. This approach may lead to lasting professional relationships.

Equally, students should not feel embarrassed to openly discuss anything that did not go smoothly during their internship experience, according to Ms. Culhane. If it’s minor issue that needs addressing or learning from, this can help guide their discussions around it.

Students should consider how their internship experience has altered their long-term educational and career goals, such as whether any changes need to be made and, if so, how. Furthermore, they can discuss what their next plans are.

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