Wondering if you should intern in college? Internships are fast-growing and more important than ever – for multiple reasons. Internships are proven to help students learn and prepare for the real world after college, because classrooms can only teach so much. Some schools and/or majors require internships in order to graduate, and some just encourage finding one (or two, or three) before graduation. Here at The 20, we completely support the learning process of students, and have opened up three summer internships this year to help in that process. It’s not to be taken lightly – we know that we are helping to shape the next generation of professionals. Here are five reasons that you should intern in college – bonus points if you want to work with us! 😉
Network and Learn Under Professionals
Though there are many reasons you should intern in college, this one is reason enough to get an internship. I say this to every new grad I meet – you NEVER know who knows who and who you will meet. Connections go SO FAR in the workforce, to the point that some people hire solely off of referrals. Building connections and networking with people is a great way to learn about tons of opportunities in your field. In addition, learning under industry professionals can be great for your resume. If you get a good mentor to coach you through your internship and teach you as much as possible, you will come out of the internship with information that you can apply in your next (potentially full-time) role. As an intern, it’s your responsibility to be engaging, prepared, and to soak up as much as possible, as there will be so much to learn.
Figure Out What You Want in a Career… and What You Don’t Want
Sometimes we don’t know what we want to be when we grow up – and that’s okay! College makes you feel pressured to choose a major that will fit in with a career, but what happens if you don’t know what you want to do? The best way to test out different roles is through internships. You’ve got to start somewhere to gain experience, and companies are pretty supportive of that. According to NACE, 81% of graduates report that internships helped them to shift their career directions by changing either the focus of classes or their major. You may have your heart set on a particular profession, but after working it for a summer, may decide that it wasn’t for you – or that you like something better. Your college years are the years to explore, make mistakes, and learn from them.
Real World Application
Let’s be real – your college classes and professors can only teach you so much while you’re sitting at a desk. You’ve got the brain knowledge, but what about the real-world application? No number of tests, pop quizzes, or projects will prepare you for what is required in a professional position. You will get to apply your textbook knowledge to things that you will apply in your day to day role.
Full-Time Opportunities Post-Graduation
It’s no secret that interns are usually the first to be considered if a full-time role opens up. According to Forbes, paid internships turn into full time job offers 60% of the time. Interns spend their time getting to know the company, the employees, and the position itself – meaning it’s the easy option when it comes to a full-time role. Companies can cut down on their spending for sourcing, hiring, and training a new employee, since the intern already has that knowledge. It’s important to be prepared, timely, and always give 110% throughout your internship.
Make Your Resume Stand Out
So let’s say for one reason or another, your internship doesn’t turn full-time. That does NOT mean that you wasted your time! Not only are you leaving there with actual, tangible experience, but you should also have some solid recommendations under your belt! In a sea of entry-level graduates and applicants, how can you make yourself stand out? By relating your internship experience to the next position! You’ve already got a leg up on the competition if you join an entry-level role with experience.
Want to join our awesome team? The 20 is hiring interns! Check out our open positions here.