Undergoing an internship can make a big difference in your chances of landing your dream job after you graduate from college.
While most internships do not pay or provide reimbursement for living expenses, there are some that pay relatively well. Finding the right paid internship can be a daunting task, but it is definitely worth a try.
Benefits of Getting a Paid Internship
An internship allows you to put the things you have learned in college into practice and develop a better understanding of the role and responsibilities you need to assume in a real-world situation.
At the end of your internship, you will be more prepared to meet the challenges that may come with your chosen career. As such, you will be regarded as a more qualified candidate by your prospective employers, giving you a significant advantage over other candidates.
Additionally, an internship enables you to build a network of professional contacts, some of whom may help you land a good job in the future.
As college costs continue to rise, a paid internship can be very helpful. It will lighten your financial burden and help you pay off your student loan sooner.
Finding the Right Paid Internship
Ideally, you should try to get a paid internship that is related to your field of study.
However, since paid internships are hard to come by, you have to be prepared to take up an internship that is less relevant to your field.
As long as the internship can help you develop some knowledge and skills that can be useful in your chosen career, it is worth pursuing.
Use the Career Services in Your College
Every college or university has a career services office to help students find the right internships and jobs.
Just go to the career services office in your college and speak to a counselor. The counselor can provide valuable advice and information about paid internships, and help you locate suitable opportunities.
Ask Your Instructors, Friends or Family Members
If you have instructors, friends or family members who are working in the field you wish to pursue, you can ask them to help you get a paid internship in their companies.
You have a better chance of getting accepted for internship if you are recommended by a current employee of a company.
Go to a Job Fair
Go to a job fair and locate companies that are hiring in your field.
Ask the representatives of the companies whether they are accepting applications for paid internship. If they are, set up an appointment for an interview.
Visit the Websites of Companies that Offer Paid Internships
Find out which companies are offering paid internships in your field and get their contact information from their websites. Then, call them or send them an email to see if they are currently hiring paid interns.
You could end up gaining invaluable work experience at a small business or a large company, doing things like content marketing, SEO and social media, mobile credit card processing or learning the ins and outs of real estate among other things. Remember, there are numerous companies out there that are offering paid internships.
If you spend enough time and effort to locate these companies, you should have no trouble finding the right paid internship.
About the Author: John McMalcolm is a freelance writer who writes on a wide range of subjects, from getting an internship to running a small business.