Simply having a degree is no longer enough to secure a job offer in today’s world. Pertinent work experience has become just as valuable as your degree and exam results when it comes to building a successful career. As a result, internships have become an essential way to help candidates stand out.
With the competition for jobs having never been stiffer, it's not a stretch to say internships have become an indispensable part of student life.
Internships bridge the gap between university and employment by providing students with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and develop relations in their ideal work environment.
What is an Internship?
An internship is a short-term job that allows the worker, or intern, to gain introductory experience in a certain profession. As an intern, you will work for a company or organization and gain the hands-on and practical experience you can use for future jobs.
Internships can last from a couple of weeks to a year or even more, can occur at just about any time of year, and maybe paid or unpaid.
High school interns especially are often unpaid because they don’t yet have the required qualifications and are limited in the work they can do. However, there are some paid internships for high school students as well.
What are the benefits of an internship?
Regardless of pay, internships can be an extremely beneficial experience for high school students. You’ll gain real-world work experience that boosts your confidence and helps you make a more informed choice about your college major and future career.
There are multiple reasons to pursue an internship in high school; I've listed a few of the most important benefits below.
One of the most important benefits of doing an internship is that you’ll gain skills and experience that you can use for future jobs and classes. Completing an internship that relates to a job you may want to have will help you get relevant work experience and a better chance of getting a full-time job in that field in the future.
Doing an internship is a great, low-risk way to learn about different jobs because they provide hands-on experience and the opportunity to observe many aspects of a career. It's much better to figure out whether you'd like a particular job during a high school internship rather than waiting until you've finished college and started working to discover that the jobs you spent four years and thousands of dollars preparing for aren't good fit for you.
Internships are great experiences to include on your job and college applications. Completing an internship, especially as a high school student, shows that you are a hard worker, motivated, and interested in learning new things. These are all qualities that employers and schools like to see in applicants.
Networking is the exchange of information between individuals to form acquaintances and relationships to further their professional careers. An internship is an experiential learning opportunity that offers an invaluable chance for students to network and build crucial professional connections before they even graduate.
If you’ve landed a paid internship, you also have the benefit of earning a paycheck, which I’m sure you know is a significant benefit and can help you put money away for college.
If your internship is a positive experience for you and the people you work for, you could be hired for a permanent position at the company. Hiring managers often use internships as an interview process to determine which interns would be a good fit for open positions.
The transition from college to full-time employment can fill you with excitement, anxiety, hope, and ambition all at once. An internship is a good way to fill some transition time with the work you hope to do long-term. If you're afraid of facing the work world when you graduate, an internship will teach you that you can do it.
Through an internship, you can sharpen your soft skills along with your technical skills by interacting with people on a professional level and in a way that you would never have the opportunity to do in the classroom. The same goes for the teamwork, communication, leadership, and problem-solving skills that employers lust for.
What internship opportunities are available for high school students?
Plenty! There is a wide misconception that internships are a college or graduate experience, but this simply isn’t true. More and more high school students are beginning to realize the importance of internships, and an ever-increasing number of employers are beginning to hire them.
Opportunities are available in any field that you can imagine, and each one will teach you something new and exciting.
It's important to remember that some of these opportunities lead to meaningful work, and you might even land a job at the company you're interning at.
While shaping a career path could appear to be a challenge for many, we at InternMart unlock opportunities for career growth. Our mission is to address the widening gap between skills needed and in-class training imparted by connecting high school students to real-world professional experiences through specially curated internships for high school students.