So you’ve recently graduated university, and now have the degree that you’ve been working towards for the last few years, but what’s next? Taking that first step onto the career ladder after university can be the hardest part. Experience is becoming an increasingly crucial factor for employers when deciding who gets their foot in the door. Therefore we strongly advise graduates to take the opportunity to complete an internship to broaden their experience and knowledge of a particular industry to ensure that they have a competitive advantage over their peers.
Below we set out to answer questions that are frequently asked by students and graduates regarding internships: What is an internship? How long do they last? Will it be a paid opportunity? Why do an internship?
What is an Intern?
What is an Internship?
How long do Internships last for?
When’s the best time to apply for Internships?
How to get an Internship
How to find an Internship
How to apply for an Internship
How to get a Summer Internship
When’s the best time to apply for Internships?
Are there Paid Internships Opportunities?
Why do an Internship?
Why should you choose Intern Avenue?
This advice will help you to understand what an Internship will entail and how it can benefit you. Internships allow you to discover what working in a particular sector or role is really like, all the while allowing you to gain essential experience that is highly sought after by employers.
Interns are usually aged between 18-24, they are typically students, undergraduates or graduates that are new to the workforce, and who are seeking experience in a chosen sector or field. However, interns can be any age! Some postgraduate degree holders may be in their late twenties or early thirties either looking for experience in a specialised field, or a career change.
Internships are in essence a form of ‘on-the-job’ training, usually for office based work and professional careers. Internships are typically undertaken by graduates or students that are seeking to gain relevant experience, skills and knowledge in a particular field.
Unlike work experience that usually lasts for only a week or two, internships are full time work opportunities that last for a fixed period of time. Employers frequently use internship placements in order to assess a student or graduate’s capabilities and potential for future hiring opportunities. Employers often prefer recruiting employees internally, from their interns, as they already understand the company, fit well within the team and have potential to succeed.
The length of an internship can vary between each opportunity, sector and employer. Internships can last for any time ranging between six weeks to a full year. Typically, student internships last for a shorter period of time in comparison to graduate internships, as these are usually carried out during the university summer holidays.
The best time to apply for a summer internships is in your first term/the beginning of your second term of university, around January/February time. When applying to internships it’s important to be organised, as ideally the sooner you apply the better. A large number of employers have an extended application process consisting of several stages, and for most the selection process takes place during the second and third terms of university.
However, for the majority of the bigger and more well-known companies such as Unilever and P&G, you can apply at any time as their applications are open all year round.
It’s important when applying for an internship that you do your research, firstly on the industry you want to get into and about what an internship entails, and secondly, on the company you are applying for. Reading as much as you can about the industry you want to do an internship in means you’re equipped with the right knowledge to take you further. More importantly, it gives you an opportunity to make sure that your interests and qualifications make you a compatible match for the role you are applying for.
Having a great CV is invaluable to your success in securing your dream internship. Make sure your CV is free of any unfortunate spelling or grammar mistakes and that you have made it specific to the internship you are applying for. List any skills you have that are relevant to the internship you are applying for but don’t make any up! You may be asked in an interview to give examples of instances when you have applied these skills.
The same goes for writing cover letters, double check them for any errors and don’t send out the same one to every company you apply to. Enthusiasm goes a long way so make sure this comes across, you need to really engage the person who will be reading it so try to make it as interesting as possible.
Making contacts through networking is incredibly useful. Creating an online profile on sites such as LinkedIn and following industry experts and HR departments is an excellent way to keep up with the latest industry news and new opportunities. You never know, some of the contacts may be helpful to you in the future!
To find your perfect internship, sign up to Intern Avenue alerts to be the first to see new internship opportunities as they are posted.
We offer hundreds of paid opportunities and update our site regularly with all the latest internships.
Most employers will ask you to send them a copy of your CV and a covering letter via email and then take things from there. Some internship applications will require you to fill out an application form online. For the more competitive internships for larger well-known companies, you may asked to complete a number of online tests or situational questions so they can assess your competency for the role and identify your main strengths and weaknesses.
Summer internships usually run for 10-12 weeks from mid-June until August. A summer internship is a great way to get a taste of what it’s like to work in a particular industry and it looks great on your CV, making you an attractive prospect to a future employer. You apply in the same way as you would a normal internship, the only difference being is that you will need to apply earlier as deadlines for summer internships are usually after Christmas or early Spring.
There is no definitive yes or no answer to this question, it all depends on the internship position you are applying for, and the role that you will be performing with that specific employer. When applying for an internship, if the pay is not stated, thoroughly read the job description and job role specification to understand the hours, duties and responsibilities you will be undertaking.
In the UK interns should receive at least the National Minimum Wage if they are performing the role of a full time worker in that company.
If you are seeking a paid internship, check out our listed opportunities – all of which are paid internships.
Internships can provide individuals with the opportunity for both professional and personal growth. They can be extremely effective in allowing graduates to gain the much needed experience to secure their first job.
Although you have studied for years at university to gain your qualifications, ‘on-the-job’ experience can be just as valuable. Internships give you a real insight into the world of work within your chosen field. They provide you with the chance to test your knowledge learnt throughout your schooling and university in real-life situations. Internships help you to build your skills, knowledge and understanding of a particular industry and job role.
Internships can be a great way to gain work experience, however they are also a great way for you to determine if you have a genuine interest in a particular career, job role or industry. During your internship you will undoubtedly encounter people who are already in the role that you aspire to, ensure that you discuss the role with them to gain an insight into your future career path.
Intern Avenue are one of the few companies that offer graduates and students paid internship opportunities. Sign up today to discover your ideal internship role.
If you’re looking for a paid internship, visit us at www.internavenue.com