Internships are an opportunity for students to finally be able to pursue their passions hands-on. High school students spend most of their time in class learning about things that seem (are) completely unrelated to where they want to be in life. That's why most students don't like school, because, in their eyes, it's a waste of time. But internships teach students about specific skills they need for their dream job. Finding the right internship is crucial to being able to grow as an individual, but it can be a bit of a challenge to find an internship that fits your needs. So here are some tips from a high school sophomore who found the perfect internship.
1. Know Your Interests
The only way to actually enjoy your internship is if it relates to the skills you will need for your dream job. For example, my dream job is to become an investigative journalist, so I'm currently interning with a private investigation company. This internship is helping me learn the ins and outs of an investigation. It's okay if you don't know what your dream job is. In that case, you should look for an internship that applies to your interests. For example, if you enjoy coding, you should look for an internship that is related to coding.
2. Create a Resume
A resume is crucial to find an internship. A resume allows someone to know what your experiences are. Some students don't have much to put in their resumes, and that's completely okay. Employers know that the internship is an opportunity for the intern to gain experience, and, most of the time, they expect their interns to be completely inexperienced. So don't think that creating a resume isn't worth it just because you don't have any experience. Another important thing is to take your time when creating your resume because it's the first impression you give. There are many websites online that can help you with the process, such as Live Career and Canva.
One of the most important is to apply to multiple internships. Waiting for a response after applying to only one internship isn't a wise idea, because many companies only reply to interns they hire. So, you might never hear from most companies, but don't let that discourage you. Sometimes, rejection is necessary to find the right fit for you. To find different internships, I used Chegg, but there are many others out there, such as Glassdoor and LinkedIn.
4. Say No
This might seem like the opposite of what you should do, but many times the internships that you get accepted into might not be right for you. For example, my first internship was with an online true crime journalism site. After less than a week into it, I already hated it. Mainly, because I was looking for an internship where everyone was more involved. This internship just wasn't right for me. So, I wrote an email saying I quit, and I honestly felt so bad while doing it. In the end, it was the right decision because, two weeks later, I found an internship as the company manager with a PI firm. So, it's important to be able to say no to internships you don't like, because more likely than not, the first internship you find just won't be right for you.
“Every great wizard in history has started out as nothing more than what we are now: students. If they can do it, then why not us?” — Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix. I know this quote might seem completely irrelevant to the real world since wizards don't exist (at least not for muggles.) But this quote captures the essence of being a student. It shows that everyone was just as inexperienced as you are today and that it requires hard work to be able to achieve all your goals. Internships are a crucial part of most students' lives, yet finding the right one is often extremely difficult. But it isn't impossible as long as you're willing to put the work in.