There are plenty of options on where to start your career. Today we are witnessing an exponential increase of young people creating a startup company while studying, others doing freelance work, but what about students doing internships while studying?
Whether an internship is paid, for credit, unpaid or not-for-credit doesn’t change its value. Internships are investments in your future. Although not all internships pay in cash they do pay in other ways.
Here are just a few reasons why internships are investments in your future:
1) Real world experience: Joining a company as an intern gives you the opportunity to work hands on in a professional environment. As an intern you’re not just there to get coffee or run errands but you’re there to gain actual work experience. Internships help by teaching you more about the career path you are pursuing. Think of it like this – internships are a way to test drive possible jobs and explore different career options.
2) Networking: Internships often give you the opportunity to attend meetings and events. By interacting with professionals you gain new connections and learn how to communicate in a professional environment. Personally, my internships have introduced me to a lot of useful resources and have given me the opportunity to meet a variety of professionals in my field. Having worked at 2 different audit and consulting firms in Mumbai for 3 years , networking has helped me acquire references and find new job opportunities. Internships can even provide you with a professional mentor.
3) Resume Builder: It’s natural and obvious that if you have more experience, you will have a better CV. Yet, most students and graduates don’t have work experience when they leave college. They limit themselves to having great grades, do the school program and then go to the market. To be clear, there is nothing wrong with that. The different will come when you have to perform and demonstrate that you understand the business in a fast way, know how to work on a team and assume responsibilities. Having an internship experience might give you a story to tell beyond having spent your university life studying.
4) Time Management: As an intern you’ll become a master of time management. When you’re working in a fast paced professional environment you need to know every minute counts. Time management is vital in every circumstance whether you’re attending meetings, finishing tasks on deadlines or making phone calls.
5) Career Foundation: Internships provide you with the building blocks you need for your future. Many internship opportunities help set the foundation for your career. It is important that you choose you internships based on your interests and career prospects. As an intern you have the opportunity to get your foot in the door with a company. Keep in mind, employers often use internships as a recruitment tool to test out future employees and in many cases, companies hire interns after graduation.
6) Might find your future employer
An internship program is something common in large companies, but SMEs are having more and more interns as a way to increase their HR capacity and create some branding through such internships. Fall internships, summer internships, semester internships, or quarterly internships, doing any internship program means you have an ongoing pipeline of future employers and references. In Nepal, most of the undergraduates (BBA/BBS) joins Banks and FI for internship and get selected as an employee later on.
7) Test-drive your knowledge and skills
Let’s be honest. Just because you are getting a degree in a specific subject, does not mean you are passionate about it. You might have a marketing degree and find out a couple of years later that is more than just thinking of TV commercials. Doing an internship gives you grounded experience of what your studies might look like in a work environment.
8) Find role-models
Yes, there are plenty of leaders and worldwide known role-models. But they are not the norm, rather the exception. Doing an internship can give you opportunity to meet different managers, with diverse leadership styles and that gives you experience on how to manage your boss. One of the biggest assets you can have when you get out of college is how you adapt yourself to your boss style and become an added value to his/her team.
9) Can be the experience of a lifetime
I know that this might be doubtful, but much internship can give you the opportunity to work in areas that you won’t work anytime in the future, you might get to know people that become lifetime friends, or you can realize how passionate you were about something you only got to know through the internship you had. Having an internship can definitely be something that transforms your life and gives you new perspective. But be open to it as well.
Internships are great tools to improve your chances as a job applicant and help make you a better potential employee. So make the investment in your career and look into becoming an intern.
Banks and Financial institutions, NGOs/INGOs, Audit & Consulting Firms and IT Firms are the major internship providers in Nepal.