As a student, there are many opportunities to develop academically, personally and professionally. One of the most beneficial opportunities available to students is the chance to participate in a practicum program–otherwise known as a placement or internship.
I’m currently in the middle of a great internship myself so I’m here to tell you why a placement might be worth considering.
Gain practical, industry-specific work experience
This is the key point of an internship. Practical work experience takes the hard skills you develop in school (reading, writing, theory, problem solving) and turns them into soft skills (work ethic, time management, communication, adaptability) that are crucial for succeeding in a professional work environment.
Having a foundation of both skill sets equips you in theory and practice, making you a compelling candidate in the job market.
Networking and job prospects
It goes without saying that an internship will allow you a great opportunity to network. You have the ability to build professional relationships with your supervisor and co-workers so it’s important to put forth the best version of yourself and make the effort to connect with as many people as you can.
Knowing the right people can help you land a job and an internship with a potential employer is a great way to show off your skill set and make a lasting impression.
Get the inside scoop
An internship is like a backstage pass. It’s a safe way to get a good inside look into the industry you’re considering and can help you decide if it’s a career you’re still interested in, or perhaps might open a door to something you didn’t expect.
Internships grant you the knowledge of daily ins and outs, giving you a clear, fantasy-free outlook on what a career in that field will actually look like.
Build your resume
Regardless of how extensive or limited your resume is, participating in an internship will provide you with a whole new set of skills and accomplishments to add to your resume.
Many internship programs are competitive, so earning a spot in the program could also be something you could add to your summary of accomplishments.
Many skills are transferable, so it’s likely that even though your internship may not be in the same field as other jobs you apply for, the skills and experience you gain during your placement will be relevant to many other positions.
It’s important to note that not all programs offer placements. However, the benefit of doing an internship through your school assures you that you have the support of your institution.
Also, schools often have long-standing relationships with many businesses and the practicum office makes every effort to ensure the internship is a great experience for both student and employer.
If you’re interested in taking a program that offers the opportunity for a placement, I certainly recommend you look into it. You never know, it might lead to your dream job or at the very least, a memorable and valuable experience.
Are you considering an internship? Learn more about the programs and faculties at our university that you could experience an internship with by downloading our viewbook!