Students often ask us about the benefits of taking an internship during their degree programme – and it’s a good question! Degrees are hard work; on top of the classroom hours there’s a lot of study time, not to mention exams, project work and revision.
While internships add to this workload, they certainly have a lot of advantages; around 60% of college graduates go on to receive a job offer after undertaking a paid internship. But that’s certainly not the only upside.
Here are 8 reasons why you should consider taking part in an internship programme while you are at university.
1. Apply your theory
Internships offer students the chance to put what they are learning into action, in a real-world environment. This helps you better understand the theories and strategies you have been reading about, cementing the learning process and giving you greater focus.
2. Get a feel for the work environment
For students who are exploring their career options, internships are great! By joining a team, you will have a much better understanding of what it’s like working at a particular company and get a clearer idea of the industry itself.
This knowledge will help you in your job hunting in the future, giving you an better idea of the types of jobs you want – and perhaps more importantly – the types of job you don’t want.
3. Boost your confidence
Of course, taking on an internship helps you learn about the work environment, but it also helps you learn about yourself.
You will have a much clearer idea of your own strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes. Most importantly, knowing that you have hands-on experience will give you far more confidence when it comes to job seeking and interviews.
4. Build networks
As Porter Gale wrote, “your network is your net worth” and internships offer students great networking opportunities. You’ll meet colleagues and team members, take part in meetings and get to know new people in a professional environment.
If you distinguish yourself during your internship, you can make life-long connections who can help you find positions, meet clients, or even make recommendations.
5. Increase your motivation
There’s a big difference writing an academic paper and writing a real report, with real world consequences. Knowing that you are contributing to the success of a live project and that people are counting on you to do a good job, gives you additional motivation.
When it comes to classwork, you will also reinforce why you are working towards a qualification – giving you that extra push to study hard.
6. Improve your CV
Students who put themselves forward for an internship show that they are willing to take responsibility, work hard, want to learn, and are interested in getting experience. These are all qualities that hiring managers are interested in and this helps you differentiate yourself in a competitive jobs market.
No matter how successful you were in your internship, you can hold your head up high and explain what you learned and what responsibilities you had.
7. Getting a job directly
Work hard and take initiative and you may even be offered a position at the company after your internship and studies are completed. If a manager is confident in your abilities to do a job and knows who you are, you are in with a far greater chance of getting a role than you would otherwise.
Of course this is never guaranteed, but internships certainly help you get your foot in the door.
8. Getting a reference or letter of recommendation
When it comes to finding your first graduate position, references and recommendations can be the difference between an offer and a rejection.
Most managers will be happy to offer a reference or letter of recommendation after completing an internship with them, so when the times comes you will have a greater chance of getting the job you have always wanted.
ESEI career fair
At ESEI we organise a career fair every semester to help introduce our bachelor and master’s students to some of the biggest companies in Barcelona. Our next one will take place on Tuesday 20th February , so if you are currently studying at ESEI and would like to do an internship – we hope to see you there!
For more information about our internship programme or if your company is on the lookout for some of the hardest working and motivated interns in Barcelona, contact Lucas to find out more.