By Maryann Akinboyewa ’15
When it comes to thinking about internships, we tend to look to major cities such as New York City, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles as the only options for summer. While these cities offer great opportunities, the Central New York area also has much to offer. As someone who has interned in a major city and in Syracuse, I can honestly say both experiences are equally valuable.
During my sophomore year, I worked as a communications intern for the Division of Student Affairs. At the time, my friends and family didn’t understand why I wanted to work an unpaid internship on campus. However, I was determined to gain experience in the field I was passionate about. Fast forward a year and a half later and my unpaid internship is now my part-time job on campus. In addition, I now have a network of professionals that I lean on for career advice and personal support.
Whether you’re looking for your first internship or third, a local internship is an experience every SU student should have. Here are 3 key reasons I think local internships are valuable:
1). It’s a resume builder!
Have you ever applied for an internship only to be turned away because you didn’t have prior internship experience? I have! Learn from my mistakes and work on building your resume as early as possible. Internships are a great place to get real world experience in your field of interest. Even more, local companies love to hire SU students. During my internship with Student Affairs, I was able to explore the world of communications through my assigned projects. I gained experience in social media, blogging, and interviewing.
2). You build amazing connections.
Another benefit of local internships is the large number of resources and connections available to you. I’ve learned that when you do a good job and show interest, people are willing to help. For example, during my internship with Student Affairs, I met many administrators and key players across campus. By the end of my internship, I felt more connected to SU than ever before.
3). It’s a great opportunity to explore career options.
When I first started at SU, I was an education major who had no clue what she wanted to do with her life. My internship exposed me to other career options and helped me focus my passions. Since then, I have changed my major and discovered my career path. I love my marketing and writing majors and look forward to working in communications.
This year, the Local Internship Apply-A-Thon will take place January 25 to January 31 on OrangeLink. Don’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity to gain experience, make connections, and explore your options!