By now, I hope that you are convinced of the value of an internship, but don’t forget how important it is that you find one that is right for you and your career goals.
If you’ve taken our advice on finding internship opportunities, you may have ended up with more than one internship offer. This is what we at Admissionado like to call a good problem to have. Who wouldn’t want to have to choose between multiple offers?!
But still, it is a problem… and a tough one to solve.
So how do you choose? Here are a few important things to consider:
Yes, it’s important that you enjoy your 9-to-5, but you should also give some thought as to whether or not you will be able to enjoy your time away from work as well.
You can choose an internship in your local college town or you can explore options available in the U.S. and abroad. Regardless of where you go, you should find a place where you will be able to use your free time to enjoy yourself.
Always wanted to visit Washington, D.C. or Rome? You should consider choosing an internship that places you there. Want to spend more time with your friends? Consider a placement in your hometown or college town.
Bottom line – give some SERIOUS thought about whether or not you would want to live in XYZ town for a summer!
A Paid or Unpaid Internship?
I hate to break this to you, but internships are usually unpaid. Of course, a paid internship is more appealing for obvious reasons. So, it should come as no big surprise to you that paid internships are harder to get. Still, that doesn’t make paid internships better. Unpaid internships have plenty of advantages!
Oftentimes, unpaid internships make up for the loss in income big time. For one, you can get college credit through an unpaid internship. Also, you may get more interesting, hands-on duties instead of being paid for boring clerical work.
Give unpaid opportunities serious consideration if you can, because they can turn into really great experiences.
It’s also a good idea to figure out if the office is a good fit for your personality. Find out if it’s a small office or a large one, and if that works for you. Is the internship pretty hands-off or will there be someone breathing down your neck the whole time?
What’s the best way to get an impression of what the office is like? Get in touch with a former intern. Sometimes, you can find contact information for previous interns from the employer or the company website.
You don’t NECESSARILY have to intern during the summer. You should find a way to optimize your free time and intern when you won’t be missing out another equally great opportunity.
You definitely need a sizeable chunk of time available to intern. Just imagine what sounds more impressive to employers? A two-week internship or a two-month one? Yes, most internships are available in the summer, but you can still find opportunities during other times of the year.
If you can’t intern during summer or winter break but you REALLY want the experience, you may want to consider taking a semester off to intern. Many organizations offer semester-long internships. Don’t want to take a semester off? You can find part-time internships to take on while you are in school. One really great time to intern is right after you graduate college. It can’t be said enough – getting a job is tough! If you are still unemployed after graduation, it’s a good idea to accept an internship while you continue your job hunt. You’ll be adding new experience to the resume you shop around to employers, and for all the reasons we’ve mentioned, the internship itself may be able to land you a job.
Like we’ve said before, interning can be a really valuable experience. However, it needs to work for YOU. Consider the factors that we have mentioned to assure a worthwhile time.