Nittany News Lehigh Valley

Survival of the fittest

The importance of internships.

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Survival of the fittest. A battle of wits. The true exhibition on Darwinism. You may be picturing war right now, but I’m actually talking about the search for an internship. Each spring, many college juniors begin the hunt for an internship that not only impacts their career, but for many is the very fact that decides whether or not they graduate.

Many college students face the necessity of finding an internship in order to graduate. An internship is not just a career stepping stone, but an integral part of their degree program. Generally during their junior year, or before their senior, college students earn credits for finding an internship that is relevant and applicable to their degree.

Students find themselves balancing courses, jobs, campus responsibilities and the search for internship positions. The very things that make them marketable, their campus responsibilities and volunteer engagements, are suddenly viewed as time sucks for possible internship time. Once they find a position and company that interests them, they must engage in interviews. This brings more research, time, and energy drains.

In addition to balancing responsibilities, students often find themselves competing with others in the same degree program for one position. Even worse, they may find themselves competing against friends.

While finding an internship may be difficult, it is well worth the struggle. Studies show sixty percent of college students participated in an internship and it’s easy to see why. Internships can provide endless benefits both personally and professionally. Job website Monster notes that benefits can include the increase of industry knowledge and connections, proof of your professional abilities, improving your confidence, and maybe getting a full time job.

So when you are knee deep in job search websites, trying to find some free time, and worried you need to be better than your friends to succeed, just remember there is light at the end of the tunnel. It comes in invaluable experience and quite often, the ability to graduate.

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Survival of the fittest