The benefits of an internship program serve as the bridge from your college education toward your chosen career path. Although completing an internship in your field of study is a graduation prerequisite, many students overlook its importance. Because of good internship backgrounds, potential and existing African scholars land better opportunities down the line.
What is an Internship?
An internship program is a professional learning experience under an introductory position. The role, which can be paid or unpaid, is set for a defined period. Furthermore, it offers meaningful, practical work related to a student’s field of study or career interest.
Generally, internship programs are done during undergraduate or graduate studies in your chosen field. You may choose to work full-time or part-time, depending on your agreement with a company. Sometimes, internships even allow you to gain college credit.
What are the Benefits of Doing an Internship?
Other than the standard job experience and a probable paycheck, internship benefits include a more well-rounded background for African scholars. As you work towards a career path, internships may help you narrow your focus and work with your strengths.
Scholarships for Africans has listed some more benefits that come with doing an internship program:
1: Valuable Mentorship
Interns will typically be assigned a worksite mentor. In turn, the mentor will aid in training, advising, and helping a student with the worksite culture.
As an intern, you will collaborate with field veterans from whom you can gain knowledge. Establishing a professional relationship and personal connection with a mentor will give you a chance to ask for practical guidance and input.
|INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITY HERE: Nesternship Program 2021 for Young African Graduates
2: Professional Networking Opportunities
An article from Forbes mentioned that networking is “not only about trading information.” It also paves the way for long-term relationships with mutual benefits. In fact, scholarship-giving bodies and places of employment notice individuals who not only show expertise in their fields but also room for partnership and collaboration.
Additionally, internship programs allow you to create a professional network that could help you meet field experts, recommend open positions, and give you professional support.
People rarely talk about the anxiety that comes after graduating. In extreme cases, post-graduate mental health issues can stem from feelings of stress and discomfort about the uncertainty of life after college.
Transitioning from study to employment becomes easier when you already know what to expect. One internship benefit for African scholars and other individuals is the chance to apply their skills and knowledge to practical situations without the pressure of a permanent corporate setup.
4: References, Recommendations, Resume
Internship programs help buff up your resume. More than awards and titles, future employers look for skills that you have developed. A good internship experience, when coupled with an extensive academic pursuit, will give African scholars and other students seeking opportunities a competitive edge.
As you apply for a future job, you will need also need letters of reference and recommendations from your supervisors or mentors. Them putting in a good word for you will help others see how you can be of value to a company.
5: Self-Realizations and Identifying Career Goals
College was a time for learning and determining your interests. Meanwhile, employment is the practical application of your interests into something profitable. However, some students still find it difficult to start career-building since they have not yet determined what path they want to take.
Through taking internship programs, African scholars can subject themselves to a diverse set of experiences that present multiple career options. Overall, you’ll find space to work on yourself, set your goals, and know what you really want.
Admittedly, it can be daunting to start a professional track. However, the benefits of an internship program certainly outweigh the fear of starting. While you still have a long way ahead of you, what’s important is that you take the first step now.
brought to you by Scholarships for Africans
Scholarships for Africans is a premier scholarship information blog committed to bringing more opportunities for Africans globally. They are part of the African Scholar Initiative, powered by Scholarship Hippo.