Why bother doing an internship?

As a student or graduate there are so many different kinds of employment opportunities available to you. Full-time roles, graduate schemes, industrial placements… but what are the benefits of an internship to you? Here’s a shortlist of some of the top reasons why an internship might be right for you:

  1. Hone your knowledge and develop your skills
    When it comes to employability, employers often look for more than a degree in their chosen candidate. In an ever competitive job market, it is important that you also have demonstrable skills, like communication and teamwork. These could be things that you would not learn from a degree, but would gain from experience in a work place. An article by Melanie Pinola of Lifehacker listed 10 of these key skills. They are not based on subject-specific knowledge, rather they are “soft skills” that are often gained through work or internships.
  2. Make invaluable connections
    Everyone you meet at an internship becomes a part of your network. Getting to know people in an industry is a brilliant way to get a foot in the door later. It is important to develop these relationships, even if you don’t go back to the same workplace, you will have people who can act as referees for you in the future.
  3. Boost your CV and Gradintelligence profile
    Many full-time jobs ask for previous experience, and if you’re fresh out of university, you may not have any. Doing an internship in your summer holidays, or after you graduate is a great way of getting this extra experience to add to your CV. It shows that you have been doing something proactive with your time, and might have furnished you with those all important skills that we mentioned in point 1.If you’ve done an internship – make sure you evidence it! Add it to your Gradintelligence profile and future employers will be able to see it in your previous experience. Who knows, even if your internship didn’t end in a job offer, it might help you get hired faster in the future!
  4. Get to know the industry
    Are you unsure of the career you want to go into? It can be hard to know what to expect from a certain job, or industry type, before ever having any experience of it. An internship gives you the chance to dip your toes in for a short period of time rather than committing to a full-time job that you might end up hating. Internships are a great time to learn about yourself and find out if this is really the career you want, or whether you should try something different.
  5. Get to know your future employer?
    Many interns find themselves getting hired by their employer at the end of their internship. Once you’ve had the chance to gain some experience and skills, and test drive the industry – what better way to top it off than a job offer? If you’ve interned over the summer, applying to work with the same company when you graduate can be a great way to get your first job – after all they already know what you’re capable of!

If you would like to benefit from an internship, be sure to sign up or log in to your Gradintelligence account. You can refine your preferences to make sure you are only tagged for internships, or broaden them so you can be tagged for other opportunities too.

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