Home General Why is a Summer Internship Important for Undergraduates and Graduates? 

Why is a Summer Internship Important for Undergraduates and Graduates? 

by AIFS Abroad
Group of interns sitting at a table in an office setting

Last Updated on September 20, 2022 by AIFS Abroad

Whether you’re an undergraduate or graduate student, setting aside the time for an internship during the summer is crucial. Without an internship, only 43.5% of students got a job offer according to College Recruiter in 2019. And if you want to make sure you really stand out in a sea of resumes, consider an international internship. Even just a couple of months of international exposure can drastically affect your future career prospects. In fact, a survey of study abroad alumni showed that 90% landed a job within 6 months of graduation. Now those are much better odds! 

Here are four ways you can grow professionally and personally through a summer international internship: 

1. Thinking Critically and Problem Solving 

People have a knack for creating problems, but the real key is knowing how to solve them. Learning how to address challenging situations in a professional environment is a skill that takes time to develop. You can cultivate your ability to solve problems at work through an internship – especially an international internship. Through navigating a new city, communicating with locals and learning the ins and outs of your host city culture, you’re thinking critically 24/7. 

2. Collaborating and Working as a Team 

The best asset to any company is its team. Employers want future employees to contribute to a welcoming and collaborative workplace atmosphere. You’ll likely need to know how to work with various team members from different departments on a daily basis. By interning abroad, you can learn how to work with people from a range of backgrounds. International internships offer you a unique opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of other cultures and establish global connections in your field of interest. 

3. Developing a Great Work Ethic and Work/Life Balance 

Internships expose you to what it takes to succeed in the workplace, like excellent time management skills and determination. Learning how to manage your time and priorities is vital for any career. With an international internship, you’ll learn to master balancing your internship responsibilities with exploring your host city. 
 
A strong work ethic goes the extra mile. But demonstrating your work ethic in an interview can be harder than you think. By putting in the work it takes to intern abroad (applying, navigating visa procedures, and organizing logistics), you’re already showing employers that you are willing to put in the time and effort to get the job done. 

4. Communicating Professionally 

What better way to learn how communicate professionally than to be in an office? You’ll gain vital cross-cultural communication skills both inside and outside the office through an international internship. And if you decide to intern abroad in a primarily non-English speaking destination, you’ll have the chance to increase your fluency in that language…  

…and make your resume stand out even more

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