An internship can provide you with real world experience, connections and insights that can give you a huge boost at the beginning of your career. However, finding, applying for and completing an internship can be overwhelming, especially if you have limited or no work experience. We’ve outlined the top 5 benefits of completing an internship, as well as some helpful tips to set you up for a successful and rewarding experience.
The top 5 benefits of an internship
There are plenty of reasons to complete an internship or work placement, whether you’re trying to advance your career, stand out from the crowd, or just try it out. Here are our top 5 reasons to do an internship before you graduate.
- Experience. One of the main reasons students choose to complete an internship is to gain real world experience before they graduate. Practical experience is something you can’t learn in a book or a lecture hall, so internships are a great way to prepare you for your career while you’re still learning.
- Connections. Internships are also a great way to meet people and make connections in your chosen industry. You’ll be able to learn from industry professionals and might even have a positive reference when it comes time to apply for your first job.
- Boost your CV. Work experience and internships look great on your resume and can help you stand out from the crowd. You might even be able to list your new network connections as referees on your CV.
- Try it out. Completing an internship allows you to try out a job or industry and decide if it’s the right fit for you. You may discover that you dislike one aspect of the role and love another, so when it comes time to find a job you’ll know exactly what to look for and what to avoid.
- Find your passion. In our opinion, the best part of an internship is finding your passion! The right placement will let you apply your years of study to a practical setting and solidify your knowledge and skills.
Is it too late to do an internship after you graduate?
It’s definitely not too late to apply for an internship after you graduate. However, you may find that many marketing agencies are looking for university students in their final years of study, meaning you could miss out. A number of agencies partner with universities as part of a dedicated internship program, meaning enrolled students will receive first preference in the application process. If you have already graduated, you may be able to apply for a graduate program instead. Agencies and businesses are always looking for new graduates to join their teams, so keep an eye out for entry level opportunities in your area.
Where to find an internship
The hardest part of an internship is often figuring out how and where to find one. There are many avenues to try, including:
- Speak to your uni. Many universities have dedicated internship programs, meaning you’ll receive course credit for your work experience. You’ll probably find that most of your tutors and lecturers have real world experience and connections too, so they’ll be able to point you in the right direction.
- Do some research. A good way to find an internship is to do some research and pick out the agencies you want to apply for. Marketing agencies are always on the lookout for new talent, so why not show some initiative and send in your application! Even if they’re not hiring at the moment, they might keep your CV on file for their next round of applications.
- Join Facebook groups. If you’re still struggling to find an internship, there are plenty of Facebook groups that share internship and work experience opportunities. They’re a great way to see who’s actively looking for interns and to get your name out there.
How to apply for an internship
In a lot of cases, applying for an internship is very similar to applying for a job. You will generally need to provide a CV and cover letter, and will likely be interviewed for the role. We’ve put together a few tips and tricks to make your application stand out. Here are our top tips for a good:
- CV. A CV or resume should provide a snapshot of your skills and past experience. Keep it short and to the point, include your contact information and pay attention to detail.
- Cover letter. You will often need to provide a cover letter along with your CV. This allows you to provide more personal information and describe why you believe you’re the right fit for the role. Our tip here is to reflect the company’s values and branding in your cover letter, such as choosing colours from their logo or addressing specific points from the job description.
- Interview. The interview stage is often the most daunting for a lot of people, so preparation is key! Be punctual, stay calm and have some questions prepared for your interviewer. Some good ones are ‘What would a general day in this role look like?’, or ‘What is your favourite part about working here?’.
Intern with TwentyTwo Digital
We love internships here at TwentyTwo Digital. Our founder and managing director is a mentor at Newish Digital, a digital marketing agency run by university students. If you want to learn more about marketing and digital, contact us to enquire about internship opportunities.