What Next? Why Undergrads Need Internships

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  • November 14, 2013
  • INK Team

This blog post comes from INK graphic design and social media intern, Ryan Riggins.

I am a twenty-something, recent college graduate, who traded his small college community to start a career in the rapidly growing tech town of Austin, Texas. In a somewhat questionable economy, entry-level jobs in my field were few and far between. I had a variety of experiences in college that helped prepare me for a career, but none were as valuable as my current position at INK, so I have come to the following conclusion: an internship is likely the most valuable learning experience you could have in your college education.

Now, to the ambitious undergrad wanting to figure out what’s next after graduation:

You are likely swamped with academic and extracurricular activities, questioning how you could possibly fit one more requirement into your already jam-packed schedule, but here’s why you need to go find an internship before you graduate.

  1. Searching and applying for internships is great practice for the job-hunting you’ll be doing after graduation.
  2. Now is the time to go after that company you dream of working for. While you might not be ready for a career there, an intern could be just the experience you need.
  3. An internship can be like dating. Spend some quality time with a few companies to learn what aspects of employers you like and don’t like. If you’re lucky and find a company, you might land a full-time gig.
  4. An internship is an opportunity to sharpen skills you already have while learning skills you never knew you needed.
  5. An internship will give you hands on experience that will never be fully replicated in a classroom or textbook.

Whether or not your university encourages you to pursue an internship – you should. Ultimately, an internship can provide you with valuable insight into solving that pesky, never-ending question: “what am I going to do next?”

 

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