My Summer Internship

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I’ve finished my second year of University and will be going into my third and final year this September. University summer holidays are crazy long; mine lasts from the middle of May to the end of September – FOUR months!

That’s a heck of a lot of time to fill. I knew that I had a decision to make:
1. Stay in Cheltenham (where I study) and continue to work at a clothes store in order to save up some money (you seriously need it at uni!)
Or
2. Try to find some work experience to boost my CV in the industry that I want to work in.

From a young age, I’ve always loved to write. Back then, I used to copy out word-for-word my children’s books, pretending I was the author. Now, I enjoy producing these blog posts and freelance writing for an online fashion and lifestyle magazine. I’m (trying) to carve out my path and figure out my end goal.

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Me, about 3 years old

So, what better way to start figuring out my life than by gaining some experience of the real working world?

I began searching job sites and signing up to online job centres to try and find something suitable that wasn’t in miles away in London.

I think it was about 11:30 at night – and on the sixth page of Indeed.co.uk, blurry-eyed and tired – that I came across something interesting.

“Admin and Communications Intern position available at the British Red Cross”

This, to me, was intriguing – I’ve worked with a charity before as a newsletter editor and enjoyed it, so I thought I’d read more.

Turns out this availability was in my home town in Staffordshire – Perfect! I can sponge off my parents! (What? Who said that?)

So I applied and got the job – a volunteer intern, working with a newsletter and re-organising the charity’s intranet site. I went to a training day in London and learnt more about the charity before starting my position, which I am now coming to the end of.

It has been during this internship that I have made some more definite decisions about what sort of career I would like to have:
1. I do not want to work in IT
2. I love editing articles for the newsletter
3. I want writing to be the central part of my career

My internship has been worthwhile, just for those 3 simple reasons.

Over the course of the 12 weeks, I’ve interviewed people for an article, presented in front of a group of Red Cross managers and attended a teleconference. So adulty.

If you’re considering taking up a summer internship, I’d definitely recommend it even if it’s not directly related to what you want to do in life. It doesn’t have to be paid, and it doesn’t have to be wildly exciting 24/7, but it will give you a step forward to becoming what you become.

You may not make any decisions about what you want to do, but you probably will make some on what you don’t want to do – and that can save you a whole lotta trouble when you come to applying for a long-term job.

It’s something to consider if you have some time to spare next summer, you may be surprised at how many opportunities are out there.

Have you ever done an internship? What did you learn?

Amy

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