With the second half of the school year getting underway and colder temperatures in many parts of the world, it’s hard to imagine planning for summer. Between attending school, studying, participating in extracurricular activities, and fitting in a personal life, thinking about what to do over the summer shouldn’t even be on the radar. Or should it? According to U.S. News & World Report (Sorensen, 2022), “Because competition for summer jobs and internships can be stiff, you should start seeking out such opportunities months in advance.” So now is the perfect time to start thinking about and planning a summer internship.
Why An Internship?
Getting hands-on experience in a career field is a valuable way to spend time in the summer. For high school and college students, internships are primarily experience-focused, which means they are designed to introduce students to an industry or career area. For some, it confirms a chosen career area; for others it may create an interest in a career not yet considered. Often internships can result in college students choosing (or changing) their major.
Begin Career Exploration in High School
Some students know from a very young age exactly what they want to do as a profession. However, most students are figuring things out–and that’s what internships are for. Career exploration is about finding the right fit. So where to begin? Start by having students ask themselves what they like in school. Students who like art may want to give graphic design or architecture a shot. Those who like to write may try journalism or marketing. What about those who love science and math? In those cases, there are options in science research or engineering.
Students can learn about career areas from school or by doing their own research. One good place to browse is the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Students can choose to explore a variety of industries such as business, hospitality, government, finance, and health services– and learn about careers associated with those areas.
Internships and Career Readiness
While gaining career-specific or technical skills is valuable, participating in an internship will help boost career readiness skills that students will need to succeed in future jobs, internships, and other post-graduation experiences. What are career readiness skills?
According to NACE (the National Association of Colleges and Employers), career readiness is a set of competencies that prepares students for success in the workplace as well as throughout their careers. This includes strengthening skills such as leadership, professionalism, communication, teamwork, and critical thinking. A quality internship provides not only the professional experience but also teaches students skills that prepare them for future success.
Plan for Summer Now!
Students who plan early will have a great head start and can increase their odds of securing a fantastic summer internship that works with their schedule. At InternWorks we offer summer programs year round and summer programs including Virtual Summer60, On-Site Summer60, and our new Virtual Research60–a remote research experience headed by Duke University faculty in the areas of biomedical engineering, medical/healthcare, and psychology. During the summer of 2021, InternWorks created custom internships for students including fashion, wealth management, music therapy, marketing, media, scientific research, and many more.
Unsure what to explore? Our Internship Coaches are experts at guiding students and placing them in the right internship. Additionally, our programs include a heavy career readiness component, so that our students are prepared to excel in the future. Apply to one of our programs now or contact us for more information.