Trust me, I know the nine months out of the year spent frantically fighting exhaustion while keeping up with classwork, extracurriculars, and attempting to have a social life make summer seem like a relaxing breath of fresh air. But if your goal is to actually be prepared for a full-time career, you might want to rethink spending your free time hanging by pool and eating popsicles. While I still encourage some fun in the sun, career preparation shouldn’t stop simply because the weather’s warmer. Internships are a crucial part in giving you a step up on the job hunt ladder after graduation. Here’s why you need an internship:
When employers see an internship (or multiple) on your resume, it counts as a big gold star in your favor. Not only do they show your initiative and drive to succeed, but internships give you hands-on experience in your field of study. You will undoubtedly be forced to apply classroom knowledge to real-world situations, just like a full-time position. As a bonus, these real-world experiences will make for great supporting arguments while responding to questions in an interview!
Process of Elimination
When asked why internships are important, Bonnie Johnson, AgCareers.com Marketing Associate, responded, “What do you really want to do after you graduate? Agricultural interns tell us that one of the top reasons they take internships is to develop insight into what they might want to do for a full-time career after graduation. You may have your heart set on working on a farm, or alternatively in an office– try both! It’s important to vary your internship experiences to determine the best fit for you.” You need an internship to give you the experience you need to make an educated choice while finding your perfect career.
Let’s face it, there are things the classroom just does not prepare you for. Internships encourage growth in the areas of communication, collaborative work, and self-discipline. They also allow you to strengthen your more in-depth practical skills which directly relate to a particular career path. For example, an animal science major may get more individual experience working with livestock, where agronomy major will be able to study plants throughout the growing season first hand.
We’ve all heard it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. You need an internship to ensure that you have connections outside of your university. A hard-working intern will be able to use their superior as a reference on a resume, giving an employer a firsthand look at the skills you’ll bring to the table in a full-time position. Not to mention all the other valuable contacts you will gain with co-workers/other interns.
It is not uncommon for employers to interview their interns for full-time positions upon graduation. Someone who already has experience with their company may be able to bypass training time and already knows the other employees and values at the firm. Even if the company you intern with does not offer full-time positions at the end of the summer, all the other advantages to internships discussed previously will make you more marketable to other employers.
Search for internship opportunities any time of the year on AgCareers.com.