Preparing for an internship, post-pandemic

The importance of an internship abroad

Internships are important. First and foremost, they are stepping stones that will help you to grow professionally, and they also give you a glimpse into the world of adulting. Internships also give great work experience that could land you real jobs in the future.

However, internships abroad are an attractive trait that employers highly value, when looking to hire potential employees. The “pros” certainly outweigh the “cons”. There’s so much you can get from interning abroad, not to mention that you’ll have the time of your life, being able to travel and work at the same time. It’s a once in a lifetime experience that is really rare and hard to come by.

By the end of the internship you will have concluded one of the most valuable chapters in your life. What do internships abroad promise?

You’ll definitely gain international work experience and professional knowledge while utilizing your own personal skills. While you’re at it, you will have multiple opportunities to network with professionals all around the world. Ever wonder how foreign companies, and offices, operate? Here’s your chance. Learn how employees in a different country work and how foreign companies operate.

Your chances of employment, post grad, becomes higher as an internship abroad is a very valuable trait. Employers love a diverse employee. What’s more diverse than spending four to six months interning in a different country? Most importantly, if the internship goes really well, you might be offered a full time job. It is never too early to start planning for an internship. In fact, 56% of surveyed students are still searching for a job, or internship, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

An important note: Before traveling, be sure to check the rules and regulations, regarding quarantine and COVID-19. Each country has their own policies on foreigners flying into their country and it is imperative that you follow these rules.

Valuable skills to have as an intern

There are certain skills that you should master should you wish to really impress your employer and get the most out of your internship. What are they?

  • Communicate well. There are various ways of communication. However, employers are obviously most interested in your verbal and writing skills. Learning to present your thoughts on paper and saying out loud are two different things. Be clear and decisive. Present your opinions with supporting statements.
  • Being interpersonal is important. In the common tongue, it’s known as having “people skills”. It’s beneficial to be able to build and stabilize relationships with your fellow interns and employees, while being the kind of person that everyone likes to be around with in the office. Why do employers love someone with interpersonal skills? Employers love individuals who understand that people have different perspectives but are willing to respect those differences.
  • Collaboration and teamwork is a tale as old as time. Teamwork does make the dream work. As an intern, you’ll be working under supervisors while getting the chance to collaborate with other interns. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. Know how you can contribute to the work and do it to the best of your abilities. Don’t be afraid to try out some new things but be sure to ask for help if you are feeling uncertain.
  • Time management. Yes, this is still a trait that “sticks’. As a student in school, everyone’s heard their teacher(s) repeatedly saying, “manage your time wisely”. Managing time wisely and having a plan is always a recipe for success. During internships, there won’t be a so called syllabus outlining exact deadlines. It is entirely up to you to organize your time, while producing results. Employers want to know that you're capable of prioritizing and multitasking, when needed.
  • Critical thinking refers to your own ability to analyze the situation and come up with reasonable solutions. Thinking critically can be shown by having an eagerness to ask questions to fully understand the problem from different angles, which could result in providing creative solutions.
  • Adaptability is such an important skill in today’s world. Learning to diversify your skills makes you much more valuable to a company. Versatility is essential. While you may want to specify yourself to a particular industry, a willingness to become acclimated with the different parts of an organization is definitely viewed as an asset.
  • Learn to take initiative when needed. Take it upon yourself to contribute as much as possible. Your potential employer will appreciate the chance to bring someone on board who doesn’t have to be directed for every task, and who’s willing to assist others with their work.
  • Being receptive and understanding constructive criticism allows yourself to grow professionally. Mistakes are inevitable and it is more important to learn from them than dwelling on them. There’s always room for improvement, no matter what you do. With internships, the same principles apply.

How are employers using technology in the hiring process

Technology has been our greatest ally in the 20th century and more importantly, it has helped us achieve wonders during the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. With respect to the #newnorm and the safety precautions to prevent infection, employers are using a new hiring technique as companies slowly reopen. How does it work actually? Here’s an example of the process that Hirevue, a virtual, on-demand video interviewing organization, uses.

The employer creates an online video with some key job interview questions. You will be sent a link from the employer. You will then need to answer those questions using the video interphase. There is no recruiter or hiring manager to talk to, just your computer or phone. The innovative part is, you are videotaping your response. Be prepared to explain your previous work experiences that have contributed to your successes. Be able to really outline your work experience and get straight to the point.

Get used to remote work

Remote work is the future of employment! For a lot of jobs, working from home is as efficient as working from the office. As college students, and young professionals, remote work is perfect for the millennial generation.

Remote internships give you adequate work experience while adding on to your resume. Throughout the course of the internship, you’ll be in direct contact with your supervisor, or manager. It is important to treat a remote internship as a regular job.

You’ll be assigned work to do on a daily basis. By the end of the week you should also report on the tasks you have completed. Remote internships are very planned out and organized. It’s important to prioritize work correctly!

Apply for an internship with AIP!

AIP offers to help you find your dream internship, whether that be a regular internship abroad or a remote internship. It’s never too late, or too early, to get the work experience you need to succeed in your future endeavors. Companies and organizations are reopening which means that employers are looking for interns. Why wait?

Learn more about our internships!