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Are Internships The New Interview?

by Anna Hasselbring on May 20, 2013

As a college student with graduation looming in just one year’s time, I am well aware of the competitive job market waiting for me. Something that my professors have re-iterated time and time again is that the key to getting the job you love post-grad is to blow away potential employers with your experience, in particular with internships. Although I had an internship this spring with a local radio station I was on the hunt to gain more professional experience this summer, which has brought me to this wonderful opportunity to intern with Sprk’d Content Marketing and Design.

Internships are important for many different reasons. First off, by interning with a company you are in a sense “putting a foot in the door”. Look at an internship as being a sort of trial run of how you would serve as a full time employee. A study conducted by Internships.com in December has found that a person has a 7 out of 10 chance to be hired by the company they interned with. Even in the event the company doesn’t make an offer, having that connection/reference in the industry will be beneficial when looking for other jobs. Internships are also the best way to get hands-on, professional experience in the industry you are looking to get a career in. Employers are looking for employees who have already gained the professional skills needed for a specific job because that means they get to spend less time and money on training. Internships also show employers that you were able to utilize and balance your time to gain more experience beyond your degree, which is always commendable. Lastly, according to the survey by Internships.com 63% of 2012 graduates have had an internship and 23% had at least 2 internships. This shows that internship experience has become almost a necessity to getting hired; some would say it is as important as the job interview itself.

To me an internship is making the most out of my time as an undergraduate. Interning gives me the tools and experience that I am not able to obtain through lectures in a university. I feel that the most important thing to remember while interning is that the experience gained through an internship is all about the time and effort an intern decides to put into it. As I said earlier internships are trial runs, so I find it crucial to put 100% effort into each task given and to take on any additional tasks that could make the boss’s job easier, because in the end that’s what I am there for. What is so unique about my internship with Sprk’d is that it is a virtual internship, which means that Christine Mortensen (founder of Sprk’d) and I mostly do all of our work and communication via Skype/conference calls and email. Although this may seem like an atypical way to conduct an internship the survey by Internships.com has shown that 33% of companies have started to hire virtual interns. I personally enjoy being a virtual intern because with all the advancing technology I feel as if it’s just as a lucrative experience as an in person internship, but I have the added incentive of being able to work in my yoga pants. Who could complain about that?

If you are still looking for an internship this summer it’s still not too late to find one! Sites like Internships.com, Internmatch, Glassdoor and SimplyHired are still posting internship opportunities. The application deadlines are approaching soon, so do not wait and start applying now. The best way to find an internship is by staying fervent in your search and applying for positions with various companies. Don’t give up and get the experience you need for the future!

The following inforgraphic is based on the study conducted by Internships.com. So many great statistics:

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Topics: Inspiration, Infographic