Internships are meant to reward you with experience, connections and knowledge you weren’t equipped with before. This summer, I interned at the Abilene Reporter-News for 10 weeks and it did just that. There were a few key things that stuck with me, though, and I think you might find them beneficial, too.
Lesson 1: Expect the unexpected
There were a lot of things I did during my internship that I didn’t think I’d be doing. First, I was an actual working reporter. I did the same job as the other full-time reporters on staff. I was not expecting that. I thought I’d be running errands and filing papers as I observed newsroom happenings. Clearly, I was wrong. I interviewed people I never thought I’d talk to and wrote stories on topics I’d never heard of before.
There was always something new around the corner and I just learned to roll with the punches.
Lesson 2: Keep an open mind
There were a few assignments that I absolutely did not want to do. They were topics I was unfamiliar with or just wasn’t interested in. But you know what? In the end, I somewhat enjoyed them all. Always keep an open mind because you never know what you’ll learn or what you’ll end up liking.
Lesson 3: Don’t let your attitude dictate your actions
There are going to be times when you don’t want to work – or do anything at all. I had plenty of those days, but I pressed on because I was getting paid to work and would have gotten fired if I didn’t. (How’s that for motivation?) Sure, there were times when I just wanted to crawl under my desk and take a nap, but I didn’t let my attitude affect my performance. Yeah, it can be hard, but you’ve got to do it.
Just remember these at your internship – or your next job – and I’m sure you’ll find it much more enjoyable.