Most of the time, college students think they have forever to get things accomplished. While the environment becomes slightly relaxed and carefree compared to the time spent in high school, it’s important to exercise a sense of urgency with everything you do.
Most programs require students to have, at minimum, one internship completed before they can graduate.
Although for years seems like a lot of time to get stuff done, it flies by quicker than you know.
I was the student who though that four years of college – which later turned into five! – was a lifetime to complete all the necessary requirements for my program. I waited summer after summer to really dedicated myself to finding an internship. I’m not entering my fifth year at Eastern Michigan University and have to stack internship on top of internship to receive the necessary credit.
Don’t get me wrong! In no way to I regret my college experience, but I do regret not prioritizing the best I could, as well as not seeing the benefits of getting through internships early!
Why do you need an internship anyway? Well, according to Intern Scout, there are four very necessary reasons.
- Experience. Having experience, especially in PR, is crucial. Experiencing the every day life of the business will easily help you determine if this is what you want to do for the rest of your life…or just maybe for a little while.
- Building your resume. We all know that achieving positions with most companies will come down to two very important things: a well qualified resume with lots of relevant experience and the people you know. Having the necessary experience will not only build that resume, but will contribute to getting your dream job.
- Networking. Remember when I said that earning your dream job came down to two things? Well the “who you know” part? That’s networking. Who would have thought that attending those agency tours, mixers and PRSSA meetings would come back to be a true help to you? One of my favorite sayings: “There’s always somebody who knows somebody who knows somebody that may be your future boss.”
- Credit. Of course, if none of those other things have influenced your decision to get an internship, let the fact that you’re required to have one to graduate be the motivator. Without the proper number of internships under your belt, you could extend your stay in college longer than you have to, or you could never leave; and who doesn’t want to experience all the great benefits of all the hard work you did in college?
Those reasons alone should entice you to get an internship as early as possible – and get more once you’re done with your first!
- Get it out of the way! In college, we are afforded so many opportunities to do practically anything we want. From holding positions in student organizations to being on sports teams to studying abroad. You can fit all of those things and more into your four years of college if you prioritize quickly.
- You’re not the only one trying to be the only one. Internships are in high demand. Some have lengthy interview processes, and, not to mention, you’re in competition with you classmates and other students at other universities. Be in first place.
- Life happens. We all still have obligations and expectations. You might have to work two jobs to get through school, you might have children. Emergencies come up and all the motions of growing up may happen. Most of all, life has a lot of hurdles for us to jump over and they appear at the most unexpected moments. We just have to deal with it and keep going.
- It’s smart. Completing a requirement as soon as it presents itself has never hurt anyone, but procrastinating can just give you a lot of unwanted stress. Plus, you might not get the most desired opportunities. You know what they say, the early bird gets the worm…