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Maximizing Your Internship Experience

Landing that much sought-after internship is only the first step. How you perform during your internship can have a major impact on your entire career path. Whether your internship turns into a full-time job or not, the lessons you learn, the experience you gain and the relationships you foster can help considerably with setting you on the right path.

  • Network - Get to know as many people as you can during your internship. Let them know what projects you are working on, so they are aware of your skills. Networking can play a pivotal role when you are trying to land a full-time job
  • Seek out a mentor - Mentors can be an invaluable resource in your life. Their life experiences, including why they entered a particular field, the biggest professional obstacles they have faced and their professional opinion of your own achievements, will help you refine and polish your approach to future job and internship interviews
  • Any job worth doing, is a job worth doing well - Some tasks assigned to an intern may not be the most glamorous, but it is still important to do them well. Some tasks may seem boring or menial, but it is important to accept every assignment with a smile.
  • Shine at whatever you are doing - Whether it is getting coffee for the group, filing paperwork or crunching numbers, give each a job a full, 100% effort. It may seem trivial, but showing your supervisor that you can excel at even the most minor of tasks without complaint can go a long way toward impressing them.
  • Go the extra mile - No one climbs the corporate ladder by just sitting there. You need to be active, and more importantly, proactive. If you finish an assignment early, ask if there is something else you can take on. Your supervisor will be impressed with your assertiveness and dedication.
  • Act appropriately - Remember, as an intern you are working as a representative for the company. Act professionally and be aware of everything you do. An internship is like a long job interview, so treat it as such.
  • Improve your skills - Take the opportunity to improve your skills. Offer to work on projects that fit your skill set, so that you can develop them further
  • Learn new skills - Step outside your comfort zone and learn new skills. This can greatly improve your marketability for employers
  • Work with teams - You may have an internship that only involves one supervisor or one that uses a large team. Be sure to coordinate and communicate effectively with every member of your team on a project by project basis
  • Get feedback - It is tough to improve your skills without knowing what is or is not working. Feel free to ask your colleagues or supervisor what they think of your efforts. Ask for specifics in terms of how you can improve in certain areas, as well as what you are doing well.