Internships are the best way to get introduced to a professional job setting. One is able to learn proper business etiquette and protocol. An internship helps one realize what is and is not acceptable in an office setting without the fear of being dismissed for one minor fault. Internships are filled with great learning experiences.
You might wonder, “When is the right time to start applying for and accepting internships?” Speaking from personal experience, the summer right after your freshman year of college is the best time to start interning. Employers are really impressed with a job seeker who is motivated enough to pursue internships so early on. Even if you are not necessarily interested in the field in which you are interning, you will always learn valuable lessons that you can apply to your professional life in the future.
You may ask, “Is it ever too soon to intern?” I believe it is a case by case basis. Personally, if you just finished high school, and haven’t lived on your own before, internships can be a little difficult, especially if they require you to move away from home. There are local internships that allow a new high school graduate to live at home and slowly get introduced to the professional world. If you are fresh out of high school, and if you have not had experience being on your own, you may want to look into internships that are close enough to home so that you can commute.
I am so glad that I chose to apply for, and accept my internship at The Leadership Institute. In the first two short weeks of being here, I have learned many new things, I have made mistakes, I have realized what it means to live on your own, and I have made friendships that will only continue to grow. When given the choice between an internship, and, say, working at Applebee’s for the summer, definitely go for the internship. Not only will you be marketable in the future, but you will also grow more as a person, and have experiences that you will never get in the local hang out.