The rise of internships in the pandemic

Two summers have passed where the majority of us continue to stay at

home. With operations moving online, work has become more flexible. We

don’t always have to take into account daily transportation, time spent in

travel, and attending other activities that seem had to reach due to location

and schedule conflicts. College students in particular have been left with

more free time while at the same time more internship recruitments past

the summer OJT season have become more apparent.

If you ask a college student now what they’re doing, at least half of them

would say freelance work or internships aside from studies. It’s unsurprising

seeing as many of them are eager to gain experience beyond student

organization work. Internships from external companies are able to help them

set expectations of the field’s they’re interested to work in and understand

what the job market looks for in fresh graduates.

Perhaps it’s the feeling of being exposed to a new environment, but the

prospect of finding internships is now more exciting to students. There’s

something exciting about dipping your toes into something new, to have a

concrete impact outside of one’s student community. Internships now also

seem to be more flexible and output based given that most students take up

work from home internships. This flexibility is a big factor for students since it

allows them to also balance academics alongside their internships.

Practicum or OJT season was often seen as a turning point by the older

generations. They thought that your OJT field already predetermined where

you’re going after graduation. While this may be true in some cases, it’s not

always the case. This time period is more of an opportunity to see if one can

work or thrive in the industry they want to go to. Now with students taking up

internships beyond OJT season, they can also try out different roles or even

industries based on their interests.

Another essential part of the OJT experience is also being guided by a mentor

or a professional who can offer insights from their long-term experiences.

Forming professional relationships with people outside one’s school circle is

also another avenue for growth. It’s a glimpse of dynamics in the work place

and interactions in the professional context. Aside from mentoring, there’s

also the opportunity to network and connect with others which can be

helpful in one’s future career.

It’s evident that internships have quote a lot of benefits that come with them.

Many students said that internships have equipped them with experiences

they appreciated. At the same time, you shouldn’t be pressured to get one

just because everyone else is taking on extra hustles. Before taking on an

internship alongside academics, it’s important to analyze your priorities and

time management skills to see if you can do both. But if you’re in need a little

push to apply for one, this is the sign for you.

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