Strutting around Sydney’s CBD in your new corporate wear can be an exciting prospect but the reality of working as a full time intern is very different to what you would see in Suits.
As a Bachelor of Accounting Co-Op student I was fortunate to have a 6 month internship during my first year in the Finance department at Cuscal Ltd, a leading payments processing company. Completing an internship is an incredible experience that helps you develop skills that future employers value. Working in industry is also a great way to help you find your passion and interests which will help you decide what kind of career you want to pursue.
Life in the corporate world doesn’t look like what it does on TV. So, what is the life of an intern really like?
Expect to wake-up earlier than you would for uni because you need to dress yourself professionally and make sure you are well groomed. Hoodies and trackies are not going to cut it so make sure you are aware of internal company rules such as collared shirts for men, casual Fridays etc.
As soon as you walk into the office, it’s straight to work – check emails, make sure you know what is expected of you and get started with your tasks!
After working non-stop the whole morning, lunch is a welcome break! Try not to eat lunch at your desk and go for a quick walk if possible – its good stretch your legs and step away from the desk. Make sure you don’t indulge in very long, leisurely lunch breaks; if you have an hour, stick to that time.
A couple more hours left! Make sure you are remaining productive and ensure that you are on top of any deadlines required for that day. If you are bored and you don’t have anything to do, ask your colleagues if they need any help – this can be a great opportunity to learn more and widen your understanding.
Congratulations – you have finished your day of work! Make sure your tidy your desk and make sure that everything is in place for tomorrow. Go home and enjoy the rest of your night and be prepared to do it all over again!
Internships are amazing experiences, however…
They are only valuable if you make the most of the opportunity by remaining curious and open-minded at work. Be prepared to put in a lot of effort but expect to gain wonderful skills and a deeper understanding of the industry you are a part of.