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Internships and College Students

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As college students, we go through our college years eager to learn, and later apply what we learned to our careers. So, what do we do? We go out and we look for internships, paid or unpaid, we are more than willing to do the job. Most of the time, three things happen: we end up not finding an internship; if we do find one, we are usually the coffee and/or lunch-runner; and lastly, the internship we do land sometimes has nothing to do with what we are studying.

We do this to ourselves because most four year colleges and universities require an internship in order to graduate. Half the time, we are shot down, and the other half is us competing with over 100 people for the same internship. It is sad to think of the millions of companies in this country, and still, as students, we are fighting each other for the little internships they do offer.

College is already a full-time job by itself. Now, let’s add in an internship, which is a full-time job, as well. So, we basically work two full-time jobs — unpaid. We lose sleep, over work ourselves, compete, and shed tears for an internship where we most likely won’t do hands on work, but more watching, listening and sitting in a corner, kind of like we do in a classroom. This may not be everyone’s experience, but in some cases, this is precisely the experience.  The stresses of finding an internship (paid or unpaid) in your field seems like it is out of your reach. Surprisingly, many college students graduate with at least one internship.

75 percent of post-secondary students graduate with at least one internship. That’s 15.75 million internships that were up for grabs.

There should be more opportunities available that set us up for the “real world.” Internships where we are applying our skills and what we have learned in the classroom will not only reflect in our work, but also will enhance our ability to get a job in the field of our choice upon graduation. Yes, there should be more opportunities in regards to internships, but not just any internship to fulfill a requirement. We need internships that fit our fields of interest. We need the experience, and we are willing to do the work, shed the tears, and have sleepless nights, but there needs to be a purpose for us doing that.

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Internships and College Students