The debate as to whether internships are valuable has been a long-evaluated discussion. Some people who earn internships land jobs in their field afterward, while others are never offered a position related to their major.
So are internships worth the trouble? In a new study, team improvement software developer Nulab surveyed nearly 1,000 people across the country, most of whom had interned with at least one company before while earning their degree. Others had completed their degrees without interning. Here are some of the results.
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The Value of Internships
Of the respondents who participated in an internship, 84.5% were satisfied with their overall experience, while only 11.5% were dissatisfied. More than half of people who’d completed an internship believed their experience to be extremely valuable to their career.
Approximately 1 in 3 people who did at least one internship found it to be very valuable, compared to the 28.4% of people who saw them helpful but did not participate in one. Slightly more than 1 in 4 people believed their internships to be extremely valuable. Those who did not participate in an internship program though were the most likely to find that internships were just moderately important.
On average, 3 out of 5 of the internships respondents participated in provided academic credit, and 2 out of 5 were paid. Paid internships were perceived as more valuable to one’s career than unpaid ones.
So what are some of the benefits of internships from those who took one? Some of the top reasons respondents found internships to be helpful were because they received hands-on experience (79.2%), they gained relevant experience to put on their resume (75.1%), and they learned soft skills (66.6%).
Others appreciated their internships because they received insight into their future career path, created networking opportunities, and received formal training. More than 3 in 5 people who participated in an internship reported working in a career field relevant to their internship experience.
Correlating Internship Experiences and Career Success
Approximately 32.6% of respondents said they got a job right out of college. Those who didn’t get a job immediately and had at least one internship earned a job after an average of 3.6 months. Those who did not participate in an internship weren’t far behind. They received a position after 3.8 months, on average.
Nearly 70% of people who took an internship believed it to be more valuable to their career than their schooling. Almost half (40.3%) of people were hired by employers with whom they had previously interned. More than 1 in 4 of those people were employed directly out of college.
Approximately 80% of managers said they would be more likely to hire someone with relevant internship experience than an applicant without an internship.
Since half of the respondents who interned agreed that there was no better way to spend their time, it could be safe to say that internships are worth it. With more than half of participants also landing jobs in their desired field, internships should be considered while enrolled in school to better a student’s chances of ultimately doing what they love.