"I can't believe this internship is almost over!"
August 11, 2015
Internships are incredible opportunities. They offer real world experience in the work place, help you network and build relationships, and prepare you for future endeavors. As the summer comes to a close, many internships are ending. The last few days of your internship are valuable—so how can you make the most of them before the experience ends?
Learn what you did well and where you fell short. “I would suggest making sure that you have a developmental conversation with your assignment manager – if you have not had one already – to ensure that your beliefs about your performance mirrors his or her beliefs about your performance,” Rachel from Eaton says. Ask them to name some of the things you did well during your internship and to point out areas where you could improve. You’ve spent a decent amount of time working for or with this person, so they should be able to really give you pointers and praise that will help you in your future endeavors.
Learn if a job opening is available or not. Your internship might be the end of your time with that company, but it might not be. “Remember to be vocal and let them know that you are interested in opportunities that they have, but don’t overdo it and flood them with meetings, emails and phone calls,” Nell from Pitney Bowes says.
Learn everyone’s contact information. Gather any email addresses you don’t have in your contacts lists or connect via LinkedIn to make sure you have a way to get in contact in the future. You never know who will be able to assist you in your job search or be helpful to contact for advice, so make sure you don’t lose touch after your internship ends. “If your company doesn’t have an available position when you graduate, I would recommend staying connected with them in case a position does become available in the future,” Ashley from Cardinal Health says.
Learn from your bosses and mentors. Schedule lunch meetings or coffee breaks with anyone in your company that you’ve built a relationship with during your internship. Ask them to share any of their own experiences or advice on how their career has played out. Ask specific questions about how they would recommend you continue in your professional growth or your job search. Pick their brains while you still can! You never know what they might share with you that could be extremely helpful or enlightening.
Learn about other companies and opportunities. Even if the company you’ve interned with isn’t hiring, your coworkers may know of other companies that are. Ask around! Express your professional interests to people you know well, and see if they know of anyone you should meet or reach out to. “Sometimes opportunities are created by you expressing interest, rather than finding an existing opportunity,” Stephanie from Asurion says.
Reflect on all that you’ve learned. Take some time to process your internship as a whole and make note of any important takeaways. Internships provide excellent experiences that you can talk about in future interviews, so you want to make sure you remember the details and can speak intelligently on it in the future.