By: Jennie Hendrick- Coordinator of Student Advising
Benefits of Internships
The most common reason I hear students state their reason for attending college is to get a good job. However, four years fly by fast, and valuable time is wasted if the ambitious college student fails to take advantage of the vast opportunities to explore and develop career goals while in school. UW business students are more likely to find higher paying jobs if they engage in an internship during their time in college, earning up to $9k more per year. Internships provide opportunities for students to explore career options, grow a professional network, gain the work experience that is highly valued by employers, learn to function in a professional environment, and maybe even receive an employment offer from the successful completion of an internship.
Misconception of Internships “Money$”
There are a lot of misconceptions about internships amongst students and employers alike, which I feel prevent each party from engaging. While students often believe internships mean no pay, no school credit, and relocating to a major metropolitan area, employers often believe internships mean free labor, or a lot of babysitting. The vast majority of business interns receive compensation from their employers. Some very competitive internships compensate generously, up to $24/hour, with the average compensation around $12/hour for UW business students. Most students are able to receive credit for their internship as long as it meets the criteria outlined by the College, which includes consideration to the number of hours worked within a semester, the type of work being done, and the employer. Students from the College of Business have interned with employers large and small, near and far. Some students have even been able to convince an employer to create an internship opportunity based on their individual skills. Further, because internships are not a required part of the curriculum, students have the freedom to potentially turn current employment opportunities into an internship simply by seeking out additional projects from their employer.
Most employers hire interns to build a pipeline of new talent to replace their retiring workforce and/or to meet the demand of the field. Employers may also hire interns as temporary or part-time assistance to complete certain projects or simply to give back to the UW community. In the College of Business, the largest number of internships are usually in accounting. The employers hiring accounting students are diverse - from oil and gas to state entities, and from small accounting firms to the Big 4. Outside of accounting, marketing and sales is the next largest area for internships in the College of Business. Students are frequently hired for social marketing or management trainee positions across various industries. And while large organizations are more likely to have official internship programs that outline what the student will experience week to week, small organizations are more likely to offer opportunities that span across multiple areas of a business.
The Peter M. and Paula Green Johnson Career Center in the College of Business was developed to further prepare students for competitive careers. When employers recruit new talent, the want to know that person has tested the waters and can bring valuable skills to the workplace. Getting a college degree is huge part of the equation, but the another big part of landing a great job right out of college is having some experience in a related field that complements the degree. Internships provide the opportunity to test-drive different industries and positions and can only benefit students in the long run as they learn to navigate the application of a college degree to the world of work.
Further question about internships in the College of Business can be directed to the Johnson Career Center at email@example.com or 307-766-4807. For more information, visit the Johnson Career Center website: uwyo.edu/JCC.
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