I always worked full-time during college, and had the same reliable job as a retail manager throughout my undergraduate degrees. When I was nearing graduation, I started applying at companies. What every single interviewer said was that they were amazed that I managed to work full-time at a good job while getting good grades.
I guess they didn't see much of that, which always surprised me! There are so many positives of have an internship, so I definitely recommend it.
Here are reasons for why you should have an apprenticeship or internship:
You have time.
I'm going to guess that most of you have time when you are in college. Yes, college can be a busy time, but I'm sure you have at least a few hours each night where you can be doing something more productive.
I took 21 to 24 credit hours each semester, earned awesome grades, worked full-time, had a house and so on, and I still had time to hang out with my friends all the time. I felt busy, but I was still happy.
How did I manage this?
I had a great schedule. I would make sure that my school schedule was perfect so that I could spend the least amount of time driving to classes, and I also needed a great schedule so that it would work perfectly with my work schedule.
A good schedule can really help you when you are really busy. It can also make you a little quicker if you have a good routine.
It looks great on your resume.
An apprenticeship, such as through City & Guilds, looks AWESOME on your resume. It shows that you can multi-task (work and go to school at the same time), that you can handle responsibility, and that you have at least a little experience in your chosen field.
This is all much better than not having an internship with no experience in your field.
You might make some extra money.
With some apprenticeships, you might be able to make some money. Yes, some only give you class credit but not cash, but some do pay. And some that pay end up paying really well. I have had friends who made over $20 per hour in their internships, so these positions can be found.
It's great for networking and future contacts.
An internship can help you find a job right after college. If you do a good job, then it might be likely that the same organization that you interned for will want you for a full-time job. Many internships turn into full-time jobs.
You also never know who you may run into again later on. These contacts that you make at your internship may turn into lifelong relationships. These contacts may also be able to get you a job well into the future. Follow up with these contacts every now and then and be sure to connect on LinkedIn.
Did you work while you were in college? Why or why not?
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