Choosing the Right Internship Program
Thinking about Internship? In a few months, the labor force will welcome yet another batch of college graduates. Thousands of degree-holders will soon flood online job portals and flock job fairs in hopes of not belonging to the 5.8% of the unemployed populace. The key, however, to finding the right job for a graduate lies in his/her internship or OJT. It is but a common grief among interns to complain about doing absolutely nothing but stapling papers and filing countless of folders. There are those that, to a certain extent, are trained at brewing and serving coffee.
The corporate world is a jungle, it is sad but true that some companies exploit the poor students and leaning away towards the true purpose of internship – that is, to learn the tricks and trades and to be trained. There are lots of internship stories from inspiring to depressing. Let’s hear a few of them:
Being an OJT for a prominent TV Network actually was close to being an “alalay“, one former OJT recounts the fun she experienced during her internship. She got to meet a lot of celebrities (of course) and be somehow part of the limelight. Nevertheless, doing errands for her boss became part of the package, like buying coffee, lunch, and merienda.
From one student blog, she recounts how she was shown to her desk and had her figure out the encoding stuff all by herself. She took it as a challenge, persevered and landed the job immediately after graduation.
Learn Before You Earn
Most students take for granted their OJTs as a mere academic requirement to qualify for graduation. They have heard the countless stories of interns ending up running errands for the regular employees. As such, to make the most out of it, they look for companies who would offer an OJT allowance. It can actually be somewhat disturbing to know that at such an early stage in their careers (and they haven’t event graduated yet for that matter), they are too eager to earn.
Remember that more than the pay, it is the experience that you are after. Entering the corporate world with only the monetary benefits in mind will lead nowhere and may prolong your success. This is a premise formulated because as you keep on working for money, you may not be able to really do what you want. Success is measured not by how much you earn but how well you do the job that you love. For example, a Communication Arts graduate honed his writing skills, went on to a marketing firm to write. He was never paid a single cent but has learned a lot for his employer to take notice. He started as a content writer earning a little over the minimum pay but since he has all the skills and the right determination, his journey to the top happened in only a couple of years. He is now a Digital Content Manager earning more than the President of this country.
Where’s the Gap?
The dilemma in the system is the intensification of the school’s OJT program and curriculum. A partnership between a school and a company can ultimately lead to better knowledge transfer and skills training. The reason behind, both can agree to have a strong understanding of set standards and rules. As per the curriculum, it is a common practice that if an intern enters a company, he/she has to stay and finish the required number of hours. This leads to the question: “What if the poor intern was only tasked to run errands and fix coffee?” If an intern after a few days or weeks decides to quit, the number of hours they already rendered will be null and void. As such they are left with no choice but to continue.
It, therefore, requires a sheer amount of research to look for a good internship program. Do not think of the compensation – yet. Focus on the skills that you will acquire and go ahead and tap the power of the internet. The world wide web is at your disposal to investigate. Your OJT advisers are there to ask for help, make well use of your tuition fee. There are certain forums and blogs where interns recount their experiences, it’s best to read them.
Below is a related article you may want to read, it also has a link to the best OJT jobs available