Don't Underestimate the Value of Unpaid Internships!
This blog is written by Yonas, our Campus Ambassador from the University of Louisiana Tech. See what he has to say about the benefits of getting an internship, even though it&s unpaid!
Many students understand how vital an internship is during their time in college and make it one of their top priorities to attain one. However, the idea of an internship is not always perceived to be a job lacking fiscal compensation. In other words, money is weighed at the same level as experience in some cases. I have found myself in the past, at times, forgetting where the real value of an internship lies. The intangibles that are received from an internship outweigh the tangibles in my opinion.
I understand that the image of us college students are always reflected as broke and in need of spare change because we’re at the point in our lives between high school (where we were heavily supported by parents or guardians) and the post graduate life (where we adapt into the “real world” and are forced to support ourselves independently). However, an unpaid internship should not be voided during the internship search because of the idea that a company will not pay you. The main pieces that root the value of an internship are still in place. Knowledge, experience, skills are all still there for you to gain from the internship. Like education, you are investing in your future with the experience that you would gain in an internship whether it is paid or unpaid. Why not make the sacrifice and take a chance when the reward is high and the risk is rather low? As far as reward, future employers would appreciate the fact that the student worked a job for the sole purpose of experience with no financial compensation.
I personally just completed a summer internship that was unpaid and don’t regret it at all. I gained experience in a field that I studied and was able to pad my resume for the future. To top it all off, I got a great recommendation letter from my employer that will benefit me during my job search after school. I would strongly recommend to anyone who doesn’t find an unpaid internship appealing enough to take a chance on to remember what the most important benefits from an internship are.