Formal, Formative and Foundational

Generally, an internship consists of an exchange of services for experience between a student and a business, ministry or nonprofit organization. The experience is formal, formative and foundational to your emerging expertise. Classroom concepts suddenly become real tools of the trade. Internships tend to be more formal than applied learning experiences because they include clear expectations delineated between employer and intern. Internships are a great way to prove to yourself that you are on the right career path.

What if I discover I really don’t like the job?

Then we say the internship worked perfectly! The second role of an internship is to weed out the roles, tasks and positions that are not right for you. Your Career Connections advisor will help you with Site Evaluations that will distill the internship experience down into quantifiable feedback, which will aid you in making career decisions for the future. Many employers hire interns as the new full-time, entry-level employee, which affords both of you a trial period and a chance to single out exceptional candidates for full-time and even leadership roles.

Do internships lead to jobs?

Percentage of 2013 college graduates who received job offers, grouped by internship experience. NACE 2013 Student Survey.

The Secret of Soft Skills

Internships provide work experience. But you are also learning something else that may be even more valuable in the long run: soft skills. These are people skills, collaboration, business etiquette and personal propriety. Candidates with these character qualities have a noted advantage over those who do not and will be able to adapt to corporate culture quickly, and that gets an employer’s attention. Most employers rank interpersonal communication and teamwork skills above technical aptitude. There’s no better way to acquire these skills than to jump into a corporate environment and roll up your sleeves.

How Grace Thou Art . . .

Character, Competence and Service—it is what we are about at Grace College. Fortunately, employers consistently seek more employees who exemplify:

  • Strong integrity
  • A moral compass
  • A well-rounded skill set
  • Other-centeredness
  • Teachable spirits
  • Confidence without entitlement or pride

As a Lancer, you have a strong heritage to uphold. You bring the name of Christ with you wherever you go.

If you would like to apply for an internship or would like help finding an internship, please contact DeeAnna Muraski in Indiana Hall, Center for Career Connections.