If I had a pound for the each time a family member told me to ‘get some work experience, do an intern’, I could probably take myself on a nice holiday or a gap year with the earnings by now. However, they are probably right. With employment being a growing struggle for many people, especially those fresh out of university, it’s become clear that interning could certainly be the way forward.

With over 464,000 people going to university in 2012 (UCAS data summary), interning may just be the route to help you stand out amongst the crowd.

Interning allows you to do the following (and much more if you’re one of the lucky ones!)
– Get some real work experience and be exposed to the ‘real world’ (don’t be put off by any office politics you might see along the way!)
– Put yourself one step ahead of the competition. You’ll be surprised at how impressed potential employers are to see internship placements on your C.V
– Getting your foot in the door. Internships quite often turn into permanent job offers. If you make a good impression whilst doing your intern, the company may see you as a good addition and offer you an opportunity you wouldn’t have got otherwise
– Interning also allows you to get an idea of what you enjoy doing and help you establish what kind of skills and experience you’d like to develop to progress your career
– It gives you the chance to utilise and put into practice theories you may have learnt during your studies

Here are some quick tips to help you along the way and remind you why you should do an intern:

I – Involve yourself. You’ve got yourself a great opportunity here, get involved and make the most out of it.
N – Note taking. Try and learn as much as possible as an intern. You never know when you’ll get the opportunity again.
T – Time management. Don’t be late and utilise your time effectively. Time management is high up on many employers priority list.
E – Enthusiasm. Getting stuck in with anything you’re asked to do, however boring it may be, it might be useful and will show the company how much you want to learn.
R – Review. Following your intern, review what you have learnt and what skills you can add to your C.V.
N – Network. You never know what opportunities could come from networking with the right people.

Of course some intern placements offer more experience and opportunities than others, but in most cases it’s up to you to try and get the most of out it.

So, why intern? Hopefully, you are now armed with plenty of reasons why interning could infact change your life. Good luck!