It is difficult being unemployed in this society where ‘what you do’ is so much a part of who you are. It is often the first question you get asked at dinner parties, a point of reference when talking about others and will pretty much account for most of your waking life when you finally do have a job. So what do you do if you don’t ‘do’ anything yet? One answer is…get an internship.
Apart from anything else, an internship will prevent you from lying in each morning and watching Jeremy Kyle in your pyjamas before trawling the net in desperation of a job. It will get you out of the house and give your days a purpose. It will get you in that all-important work mindset, which equips you with professionalism, enthusiasm and many other –isms I’m sure.
Tried and Tested
It is possible to long for a job without really knowing too much about it. The beauty of an internship is the opportunity to sweep away the glamour surrounding an industry and see what’s underneath. The attraction of a job can be part reputation, part hearsay, part mystery and an internship allows you to discover for yourself the mind-numbing admin or difficulties in liaising with certain parties, that you could not have experienced otherwise.
Money, Money, Money
The purpose of an internship is not to fill your coffers with gold. In fact, it’s the opposite. You are performing very helpful services for which you may be paid travel and lunch expenses, if that. But the experience and the results are worth so much more. Employers are always looking for that ‘can-do attitude’ (I know, it’s an awful phrase) and internships demonstrate just that. They are empirical evidence of your knowledge that you are at the bottom of the pecking order and your determination to get to the top. So live cheaply for a few months at home or with friends and you may be pleasantly surprised.
Where To Go
Obviously googling ‘internships’ will start you off but here are some great websites that target your interests and cover all industries:
You can sign up for daily emails that inform you of the latest opportunities, tailored to your specifications.
Internships can be as coveted as actual jobs so it will really work in your favour if you can get one under your belt. Don’t be afraid to use and abuse your contacts; send an email to that friend of a friend of a friend because generally people are happy to help and you never know what it may lead to. In its turn, an internship could result in a job if you get on well within the company, the salary of which may more than compensate for those few cash-strapped months…
Photo by Kirlian Camera