As an undergraduate, getting an internship in any company is beneficial for you and your future career. This is your opportunity to gain hands-on experience within your desired niche or field of study. Ideally, you will be placed under the supervision of an experienced person who can guide and train you. You’ll also be able to determine if your particular chosen career path is a good fit for you.

Having a successful internship definitely looks good on your resume when you start applying in the future. Recruiters will be able to see that you have work experience, which is a plus point for you.

But while internships are beneficial for you, what exactly should you expect when you get one?

Read on to find out.

You won’t get an internship at the first company you apply to.

You should remember that you are not the only undergraduate applying for internships. You’re just one of the many who pass their internship applications every day to various companies. Therefore, you should do your best to stand out. Research the companies you’re applying to and find out what they’re looking for. You can also browse through different internship cover letter examples to have an idea of what to write.

There should be clear communication between you and the company about what you are expected to do.

Once you are accepted for an internship, the next step is to talk to your supervisor. Your supervisor should communicate to you clearly the company’s goals and expectations for you during your internship period. Find out what type and amount of work they would want from you. Find out also specific projects you are expected to be part of. That way, you can fulfill the next expectation, which is…

You should be professional.

Think of your internship as an actual job, whether you are paid or not. Remember, in return for training and experience, you will sometimes have to perform menial tasks. You won’t always get the best projects or the most interesting ones. But whatever you get assigned to do, do it with enthusiasm. When your supervisor sees that, they might give you more access to the projects you actually want to be part of. Remember, before you get more significant responsibilities, you have to show you can handle the small ones excellently.

You will have to balance schoolwork and your internship.

Speaking of professionalism, you have to learn how to balance working and going to your classes as an intern. You cannot use the fact that you are in class to miss out on your internship work. There are educational activities you need to attend, but you are also expected to fulfill your duties at the office. Think of it as practice for the real world, where you have to juggle more than one thing successfully. Of course, if the pressure to finish tasks on time is beginning to feel overwhelming, talk to your supervisor. They will definitely appreciate your honesty.

You won’t get a guaranteed job offer.

One last thing you have to remember is that finishing an internship at any company won’t mean you’ll end up working there. For one thing, did you impress your supervisor enough to warrant a recommendation? Plus, there are also other qualified individuals who can fill the position you want. You must take the internship time to build connections and referral networks. A job offer is great, but strong professional relationships can serve you well into the future.

Excited to start your internship? Utilize this time well to learn more about your desired field and gain valuable experience. And most of all, enjoy the experience!