4 Tips to Make Your Internship Unforgettable
By Katie S.
Internships can feel slightly overwhelming. I came into my internship wanting an unforgettable experience, but I wasn’t quite sure how. When I started my internship, I was intimidated because I was entering a new environment with little experience and trying to immerse myself in a culture that I was unfamiliar with. It’s easy to get overwhelmed in the first days of an internship, but these tips helped me turn this into an unforgettable summer.
Tip 1: Find a Way to Put Your Own Passions into Your Internship
When I started this internship, my supervisor asked what I was interested in as it pertains to public health. I shared with her the things that interested me the most: climate change, emergency preparedness, and environmental health. I was lucky that my supervisor tried to incorporate my passions. If your mentor is open about the deliverables of your internship, try to find a way to incorporate things you are passionate about. I found that incorporating things that I love into my internship makes me go into work with more vigor and be more excited to see where the day will go.
Tip 2: Take Advantage of Opportunities to Socialize
Yes, you are in your internship to learn, but learning how to fit into the workplace environment is part of it. Not only will you get whatever the technical experience that is associated with your internship, but also develop the soft skills that are associated with it. Take the time to get to know your coworkers and spend time with them. If my coworkers go out to get coffee, I’ll go with them, no matter if I buy it or not. In addition to these skills, internships are also about building relationships.Taking the time to get to know your coworkers allows you to build that relationship so that you can start building your network and hopefully your references!
Tip 3: Work Hard, But Know Your Limits
Now, this may seem like a no brainer, but I feel like it has to be said. I am an avid believer that you get out what you put in. So, if you put effort into your internship, you’re probably going to have a greater experience than if you don’t. However, most of all, people notice when you put a lot of effort into something. It shows in the quality of work you put out and the attitudes you have approaching new projects. That being said, know your limits and what you can take on. If you have a full plate and you can’t fit extra tasks into your workload, just be honest. When someone overextends themselves, they can drop the ball on certain projects or do subpar work. It’s always a balancing act, which takes time and practice!
Tip 4: Have fun!
Sure, there are times when you need to put your head down and work, but internships, above all else, are learning experiences. If you stay positive and make work a fun place to be (while still being productive, of course), you will have a great time in your internship!