How to Make the Best of Your Internship!

You’ve went through the rigorous application process and now you’ve landed an internship, what’d you do now? Many times students are bombarded with articles, workshops and discussions on how to stand out and get that internship they’ve dreamed about. However, little information is provided on what to do once you’ve started the position.  Interning can be intimidating because you are put in a company where you don’t know anyone and you’re not sure what is expected from you.  For many, the natural instinct is to keep to yourself, pray no one asks you anything you don’t know and wait for work to come to you. But where are the rewards in that? How can you make the best of your internship when you’re hiding behind a computer screen? The answer is that you CAN’T.  Although it can be intimidating, interning is a great learning experience where you can put into practice everything you’ve learned. Here are a few ways to make the best of your internship.

Positive and Enthusiastic Attitude

When you first start an internship, your initial reaction may be to stay quiet and to yourself. However, coming in with a bright, positive attitude shows everyone that you are ready and willing to work.  People enjoy working with others who do not complain about their responsibilities no matter how mundane they may be. Having an enthusiastic attitude also shows you’re a team player.

Ask Questions

Remember that internships are intended to be a learning experience for you. As an intern you are not expected to know everything and your employers know that. Asking questions are important especially when you are unsure of something. Many mistakes can be avoided if questions are asked in the first place.  Although you might feel that asking a lot of questions is annoying, it’s even more a problem if someone else has to fix your mistake because you didn’t ask how to complete an assignment.  Asking questions shows your employer that you are eager to learn.

Take Initiative

Employers love interns who are eager to work. If there’s a day where there is nothing handed to you, go search for work.  Ask other employees if they need extra help finishing a project or is there anything new they have for you.  This shows your employer that you are a team player who wants the company as a whole to do well.  As time goes on your supervisor will know you better than the other interns and will look to you for help on bigger projects. Remember it’s a GREAT way to stand out.

Lastly, Enjoy your internship. Interning is a wonderful way to meet other interns or professionals in your field. Use this as an opportunity to make new friends and connections!

Vania Andre, PR major, Class of 2010

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