What I thought an internship was: doing the work without the pay because I am getting school credit that I paid for...
When I started my internship at WOOF Radio in Dothan, Alabama in May, I had no idea what to expect. WOOF is a small radio station that is family owned and operated and has been for over 50 years that plays soft rock on the FM station and there is a sports talk station on the AM side. I expected to go in, work and hopefully learn something that would help me get a job later. BUT what I got was an AMAZING internship that I never dreamed would be possible. This internship hasn't just taught me theory type things that I have heard about in school, I have gotten hands on experience and so much more. Honestly, I think I have learned more in my 10 weeks at WOOF that will help me in the long run than I think I have learned in college.
Now I did learn a lot in college but internships definitely teach you so much more of a real world learning. If your major or school does not require an internship, do yourself a favor and get one anyway. Try and get multiple if you can. It can't hurt you, you can only go up.
And now that I am graduating in 2 weeks here are the top 3 things that I learned from my internship.
Don't be afraid to try new things:
Just because your major is in one thing, if you are interning at a company that is in your field, just do whatever they ask you do. You will learn more and be more useful in the long run if you can do anything in the field. Don't limit yourself to what you think you want to do, because that's great and all that you know what you want to do, but you might be asked to do a different task and end up falling in love with it.
You are there to learn and those who work there should know that and hopefully they will be willing to help you. I know that I have been blessed to have such an amazing internship with people who really care, but in most circumstances, you are going to get out of the internship what you put into it.
If anyone has seen the movie The Internship about the two men who loose their jobs and get internships at Google (if you haven't seen it, go watch it, it's hilarious) but in the movie, Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn are the least likely people to succeed in the internship but because of the connections they make with the other interns and those around them, they end up doing a whole lot better than anyone expected from them. But the whole point of this is to say, don't keep to yourself during your internship. Make friends with those you are with, both other interns and the employees. It will really pay off because especially the employees of the company have been doing whatever you're doing longer than you have and they know more people so they can be great resources for job hunting.
What kind of things did you learn from your internships? Where did you intern at? What advice would you give to those interning or about to start to job hunting??