6 Myths about internships

When you think of the word “intern,” what comes to mind?  Is it a hopeless student pushing mind numbing paperwork all day? Or maybe a frazzled young hopeful heavy laden with errands that include coffee and donuts? There are numerous depictions of interns out there, most of which are simply not true.

Although there may be some aspects of monotony to being an intern, there may be more advantages to the trade. Keep an open mind and get in the know about internships. Here are six myths about interns that may surprise you.

1. Interns Only Do Undesirable Grunt Work

It is a popular depiction in films to show that interns only do busy work as they desperately try to break through the ranks. However, this is not always the case (and definitely should not be the case especially if the intern is unpaid).  As with any job, there will be duties that seem mundane. It is the company’s duty to teach the intern necessary tools of the trade that are needed to succeed. In some case, interns are given a mentor to ensure that they are properly taught the key points of the industry and to track progress. If you find yourself constantly doing unrelated busy work only, it may be time to speak up and ask for more.

2. Interns Are Powerless

It’s best to consider yourself a new employee rather than an intern. Respecting your fellow employees should be at the top of your list at all times, but don’t be afraid to pitch in with innovative ideas. There are cases where superiors enjoy to hear the input of a fresh young mind. Before you confine yourself to the mail room, get your tasks done with a smile and see how you can help to make things better. Observe the work culture around you and when the water looks clear, dive in. You may be relieved to find that opening up and sharing well thought out suggestions can take you very far.

3. Interns Don’t Want to Be There

All too often interns are frowned upon as young, unappreciative kids who don’t really want to be present. Some may even feel that interns are forced into the position to gain credit or just another notch on the resume belt.  Prove everyone wrong with a bright smile and a will to succeed from the very beginning. Be on time for your shift, dress accordingly and have a mind to handle anything that may come your way.

4. Internships Can’t Take You Very Far

As an aspirant in any field, the lack of tangible experience can hurt your chances of landing a job. When you throw in an internship, your chances of landing a position can greatly increase. The network opportunities that will be available during the internship are also a valuable component in your business repertoire.

Don't be fooled by these internship myths

5. Unpaid Internships Aren’t Worth The Time 

Although it may be tempting to overlook unpaid internships entirely, don’t be so quick to rule them out. Instead of viewing an internship in a financial sense, take a look at the value of the experience that you will gain. The quality of the company and potential business connections are factors that can have big returns over instant monetary gratification.

6. Interns Aren’t Competent

A recent college graduate may appear to be below the totem pole in the eyes of an experienced veteran. However, an intern brings an enthusiasm to the workplace that can shed a new light on how things are done. Show everyone in the workplace that interns do have a place in the workplace by being the best intern that you can be.

Looking for internships in Rhode Island?  Visit www.bridge.jobs to browse internships for free!

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About bridge.jobs

Bridge is a program that focuses on connecting employers and students in Rhode Island. The goal of Bridge is to match Rhode Island employers with talented students looking to gain valuable professional experience. Applying knowledge and skills acquired in college to a professional setting is a vital component of a student’s college education. Students who gain relevant internship experience are better prepared for full-time employment after graduation. By hiring interns, employers gain qualified, career-driven young professionals as employees. Student bring with them exposure to cutting edge practices and technology, new insights and philosophies, flexibility and a thirst for knowledge. bRIdge has a particular focus on connecting students and employers from specialized fields such as Business, Science, IT, Technology, Health, Design, Engineering and Manufacturing. The bRIdge website allows employers to post paid or unpaid internships online and directly reach out to a vast and talented pool of students. College students and recent graduates can sign up and start looking for an appropriate professional learning opportunity in minutes. bRIdge is a program of the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA) and RISLA’s College Planning Center of Rhode Island. RISLA has joined up with Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Rhode Island (AICURI), the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education (RIBGHE) and the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce to bring together academia, business and community. If you have any questions about this program or if you need any assistance, please feel free to contact us.

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