5 questions to think about during & after summer internship

5 questions to think about during & after summer internship

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5 questions to think about during & after summer internship
Bishal Rana

Summer internships are an excellent way for students and recent graduates to gain hands-on experience in their field of interest. They provide an opportunity to learn new skills, gain industry knowledge, and develop professional relationships. Internships can be full-time or part-time and last for a few weeks or months. They can be paid or unpaid, but paid internships are more common. 

Summer internships are available in various fields, from business and finance to engineering and technology, to non-profit and government sectors. Many companies and organisations offer internships specifically for college students, providing a valuable opportunity for them to gain experience and build their resumes. A summer internship can be a helpful step towards a successful career.

What did I learn during my internship, and how will it benefit me in the future?

During your internship, you likely had the opportunity to learn new skills and gain experience in your field of interest. Some specific things you may have learned include:

  • Technical skills: Depending on your field, you may have learned about new technologies, programming languages, or tools you can use in your future work.
  • Industry knowledge: You may have learned about the industry you were interning in, such as the current trends, common challenges, and best practices.
  • Professional skills: You may have learned how to work in a team, communicate effectively with colleagues, or manage your time and tasks.

In the future, the knowledge and skills you acquired during your internship will be valuable in helping you secure a job or advance in your career. The hands-on experience you gained will be helpful in your future job interviews, and the industry knowledge you acquired will help you better understand the context of your work. The professional skills you developed will also be helpful in any work environment.

How well did I perform during my internship, and what areas do I need to improve on?

Evaluating your performance during an internship can be an important step in understanding what you did well and what areas you need to improve on. Some key factors to consider when evaluating your performance include the following:

  • Meeting or exceeding expectations: Did you complete the tasks and projects assigned to you to the best of your abilities and within the timeframe given?
  • Quality of work: Were the outputs of your work of high quality and free of errors?
  • Initiative and creativity: Did you take the initiative on your projects or develop new ideas to contribute to the team?
  • Professionalism: Did you professionally present yourself, maintain a positive attitude, and adhere to the company's policies and procedures?
  • Teamwork: Did you collaborate effectively with your colleagues and contribute to the team's success?

It will be ideal if you ask for feedback from your supervisor, mentor or colleagues, so you can get an idea of how your team perceives you and where you stand regarding your performance. If you cannot ask for feedback, you can evaluate yourself using the abovementioned factors and also consider keeping a diary during the internship to note down what you did and how you felt about it. This will help you identify patterns and areas where you can improve.

What was my favourite part of the internship, and what did I enjoy the most about it?

Reflecting on what you enjoyed most about your internship can help you identify what you are passionate about and what type of work you would like to pursue in the future. It can also help you remember your experience's positive aspects and appreciate all you've accomplished. Some examples of things you may have enjoyed during your internship include:

  • Working on a specific project or task that you found particularly interesting or challenging
  • Learning new skills or gaining knowledge in a particular area
  • Collaborating with and learning from your colleagues or mentors
  • Being given autonomy and responsibility in your work
  • Having the opportunity to apply what you've learned in school to real-world scenarios
  • The overall atmosphere and culture of the company or organisation.

It's important to take note of these things so that you can seek out similar future opportunities, whether through internships, job opportunities or even your own business.

How did I contribute to the team or organisation during my internship?

During your internship, you likely had the opportunity to contribute to the team or organisation in various ways. Some examples of how you may have contributed include:

  • Completing tasks and projects: You may have been assigned specific tasks or projects to work on, which you completed to the best of your abilities and within the given timeframe.
  • Sharing your knowledge and skills: You may have shared your knowledge and skills with your colleagues, helping them solve problems or complete tasks more efficiently.
  • Offering new ideas or perspectives: You may have brought new ideas or perspectives to the team, which helped them think about problems in new ways or come up with better solutions.
  • Providing support to other team members: You may have provided support to your colleagues, such as helping them with a task or giving feedback on their work.
  • Helping to improve processes: You may have identified areas where the team or organisation could improve and offered suggestions for making things more efficient or effective.

It's important to note that even if you were an intern, you still had the opportunity to contribute meaningfully to the team or organisation. Your contributions, no matter how small or big, helped to make a difference, and that is worth noting as it will be helpful in your future job interviews.

 

What are my next steps, and how will I use what I learned during my internship to further my career goals?

After your internship, it's essential to take some time to reflect on what you learned and how you can apply it to further your career goals. Some possible next steps include:

  • Leveraging your experience: Use the knowledge and skills you gained during your internship to make yourself a more attractive candidate for future job opportunities. Share your experience in your resume and cover letters, and use it to demonstrate your qualifications during job interviews.
  • Networking: Use the connections you made during your internship to continue building your professional network. Keep in touch with your supervisor, mentor, and colleagues, and consider reaching out to other professionals in your field for advice or opportunities.
  • Seeking further education or training: Use what you learned during your internship to identify areas where you would like to gain more knowledge or skills. Consider taking classes, workshops, or attending conferences to help you continue developing professionally.
  • Applying for a full-time job: If you enjoyed your internship and your team or organisation offered you a job, it may be a good idea to apply for a full-time position.
  • Starting your own business: If you've gained the skills, knowledge, and experience during your internship, you may be ready to create your own business.

It's essential to set clear career goals for yourself and use the experience you gained during your internship as a stepping stone to reach those goals. Remember to take calculated risks and not be afraid to explore new opportunities as they arise.

Advantages of Summer Internships

Summer internships can offer a variety of advantages to students and recent graduates, including:

  • Hands-on experience: Summer internships provide an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a specific field or industry, which can be valuable in building a resume and preparing for a future career.
  • Networking opportunities: Summer internships provide an opportunity to meet and connect with professionals in the field, which can be valuable in building a professional network.
  • Skills development: Summer internships provide an opportunity to learn new skills and gain knowledge in a specific field, which can be valuable in building a resume and preparing for a future career.
  • Career exploration: Summer internships provide an opportunity to explore different career paths and better understand what type of work is a good fit for you.
  • Earning potential: Some internships are paid and can help students to earn some money during the summer.
  • College credits: Some internships can be taken for college credits, which can help students progress in their degrees.
  • Job opportunities: Summer internships can sometimes lead to full-time job opportunities after graduation.

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