Internship: my experience
I spent 2 months of my summer working… and I loved it.
A lot of students decide to use their summer break to do an internship. And so did I. I honestly never thought I would have ever used any of my summers while still a student to work (unless strictly necessary), aware that as soon as I won’t be a student anymore I can say goodbye to a whole 3 months of holidays. But when the opportunity of an unpaid internship for 2 months close to home (so not the whole summer and without extra costs) came up, my eagerness to always learn something new, and finally build some experience convinced me not to waste this chance. I interned at Balda Medical, working both for the HR department and the Marketing department.
During these two months I learnt different things, which I’m sure will help me a lot in my future work experiences. One of this is how it works in the office environment. If this was not my first work experience, it was surely the first one not online, nor in the university environment. And even if sometimes I couldn’t resist from still putting my earphones on and working listening to my favourite playlist, I had the chance to see around me and to try first hand how everything works, from scheduling appointments, to the communication between departments.
In parallel with how it works in the office environment I also had the chance to have a better understanding of all the procedures in a company, and especially in an international group. From thinking about the budget, to asking permissions for new projects, collaborating, learning from each other, as well as sometimes all these procedures can also slow down good ideas sometimes.
Probably it doesn’t come new to anyone if I say that with an internship you also come to find out more about what you like and what you don’t like, not as we are used to, but what you enjoy working on the most. Which is not quite the same thing sometimes. You also become better aware of all those maybe not-so-funny aspects that there will always be of a great (and fun) project you have been working on and loving. For example, I always loved organising events, and I loved it in my internship: taking care and also taking the responsibility of the organisation and the logistic of certain type of events does not scare me at all. But when it came to buy what was necessary, and actually set up everything… well, not my favourite thing. But necessary! Or while doing a report on something very interesting, but after a while it gets boring… still need to finish it! And the project still remains a great one, just now I am more aware of all sides of the job. This I believe can help greatly, in the small and in the bigger picture about understanding what your dream job is really about, and/or if something is your dream job at all or not!
Another great opportunity during an internship is that one of networking. You can meet so many people, and you should never be afraid to go and introduce yourself (even if this can be intimidating sometimes!). Follow up on LinkedIn for example (my connections increased so much!) and let people remember who you are… you never know where these connections can bring you in the future!
My suggestion to anyone going to do an internship is this: don’t be afraid to ask questions and/or clarifications on anything really. You’re there to learn, and they are there to teach you. Asking good questions is going to help you showing you’re committed to whatever you’re doing and learning there.
But most importantly, don’t ever be afraid to speak out when you have ideas. Of course, be polite and respectful of those who have been working there for longer, but bringing new and fresh ideas in the company is the reason why a company offers internship in the first place! Also you want to leave a good impression (and maybe get an offer for a job later?), do you know any better way to do it? Show who you are, and all you can bring in the role!
My internship experience has really been a fantastic one, where I met fantastic people who always welcomed me with a smile and have always been open to teach me new things and let me show them something new too. I can’t do anything else than recommending to do the same to others.
Un grande abbraccio