Should I Intern as a College Senior?

This article was originally published on WayUp.

Considering an internship during your senior year can seem overwhelming, particularly when graduation and the post-college job hunt lie ahead. Still, interning during your senior year can give you the chance to add some new skills to your resume and build up your professional network. When deciding whether or not to take on an internship during your final year, it’s important to weigh out factors like your class schedule, your previous internship experience and the field you’re hoping to enter.

Once you’ve done that, here are a few other factors to consider when deciding whether to intern as a senior.

Internships help build your professional network.

Internships are a great way to expand your professional network by introducing you to key players in the industry you’re hoping to enter. This is especially helpful if you’re getting close to graduation and would like to have more contacts in your field.

Employers want to know that you’re spending your time wisely.

By the time they graduate, each senior should have something solid on their resume. While several college students will opt to do summer internships, an internship during your senior year will show employers that you take initiative and have a desire for continuous learning.

You continue to hone time management and professional skills.

Senior year goes by fast, but when you’re balancing an internship on top of your classes and extracurriculars, you quickly learn time management skills. These skills will come in handy after graduation regardless of what field you got into because they’ll help you prioritize tasks and make the most of all the hours in the day.

You’ll be top of mind for the employer.

Employers love to hire people they know and trust. If you’ve performed well at an internship and maintain strong relationships, it’s likely your employer will be willing to vouch for you. Even if they can’t hire you at their company, they can share your resume with people in their own network.

You’ll be able to earn extra money.

If you land a paid internship, you’ll be able to not only purchase things for yourself, but also save extra money for your first apartment or an emergency fund. And best of all, paid internships are much more likely to get you hired when you graduate.  

Balance is a tricky thing in college, especially during senior year. However, if you find you have the time to take on an internship, doing so might be one of the most useful things you can do to help you land a job after graduation. In addition to providing you with much-needed experience, taking on an internship as a senior will help build your professional network and set you on the path to success.

By Alice Song
Alice Song Career Advisor