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Common Misconceptions Interns Have About the Internship Process

Written by Angela Finding

Internships are multifaceted experiences that can vary by company and individual. However, there are some common misconceptions that many interns get wrong about the process.

Internships Lead to Guaranteed Jobs

While internships give you experience and contacts, they do not always end in a job offer. Considering you know there is no guaranteed job, make the most of your internship and work to foster relationships with your co-workers to grow your professional contact base.

Anyone Can Be an Intern

Internships are a great way to get hands on experience in your desired job field, but not everyone can be an intern. Considering 46.5 percent of internships are unpaid, you need to have dedication and a desire to learn instead of just looking for a paycheck. Plus, interns must be cooperative, flexible, and willing to tackle any task placed in front of them.

You Don’t Have to Record Your Internship

Many people believe that once your internship has begun, there’s no need to record your process. While some employers may keep tabs on your internship, it’s up to you to keep track of your projects completed and lessons learned. By doing this you’re able to demonstrate your progress to a professor, counselor, or employer when your internship is over.

Internships Are Easy to Get

75 percent of employers say they prefer candidates with an internship or prior job experience. But only 62.8% of students snag an internship while still in college. Internships are easier to get while still in college through student professional organizations and professors, but the likelihood of an internship staggers in comparison to the necessity of on-the-job experience.

Interns Aren’t Employees

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, interns are technically not employees if they participate in unpaid internships. However, internships are still a form of employment experience that can be used on a resume and you can use relevant projects from your internship to leverage your way into a benefits-eligible job.

Your Opinion Doesn’t Matter

As an intern, you may feel like another cog in the wheel of a company, especially if you’re unpaid. But, just because you’re learning doesn’t mean you can’t offer your opinion along the way. Offer your employers insight into your internship process so they can better improve the program and give solutions when the question arrives in the workplace.

Don’t get weighed down by preconceived notions about internships. Instead, forge your own path and arm yourself with knowledge of the realities of internship.

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