As deadlines for internships creep up on students, many are scrambling to complete applications. Internships are an important and essential part of the college experience. Internships provide students with the necessary experience to enter the workforce. Alumna Janae Sargent said internships provided her with the experience she needed to make the connections to get jobs in the real world.
She added there is a fine line because college students generally have to work to pay bills and many internships are unpaid. “You really can’t overvalue the importance of internships. It’s a tricky deal, especially in the real world because you need to pay your bills but also get your foot in the door. If you can swing it though, it really will pay off,” Sargent said. Sargent said her internships really opened doors for her when she was still in school and led her to meet people that turned into mentors she still keeps in contact with.
She added that internships are like a crash course in the career field and that is an opportunity that students should not pass up. Sargent has advice for students that are starting to worry about the job market. “You just have to accept that you usually can’t get your dream job without getting in the door first and internships are the most inclusive ways to do that,” Sargent said. “There are paid internships though, they are few but they’re out there.” While there are many websites dedicated to helping people find both paid and unpaid internships such as indeed.com and looksharp.com, Pacific does a great job with steering students in the right direction. The Career Development Center is a major resource as well as the Career Fair held on campus during fall semester.