The Struggles of College Internships


Chloe Miller/Villanovan Photography

Co-Culture Editor Chloe Miller at her summer internship.

Maddie Schieder, Staff Writer

Being an intern is not all sunshine and rainbows, but the experience it brings leads us to something even more amazing. 

Internships, more now than ever, are crucial to have during one’s college career. As soon as September hits and Villanovans finish their summer internship, the hunt is back on. There is seemingly no break. 

“Once we get back to school after the summer break, I was already looking at internships,” junior Maggie Winstone said. “Having a good internship is make or break. To get any job, employers always expect internship experience nowadays.” 

For many students, opening Linkedin brings a sense of dread. Each day someone is announcing a new internship or job position. Put simply, finding an internship can be a bloodbath. 

This past summer, I had my first in-person internship in a new city. To say I was nervous is an understatement, but it ended up being the best thing to ever happen to me. In a welcoming environment and respectful work culture, I thrived. Sure, running errands for your boss or completing busy work are not the most glamorous tasks, but being enthusiastic about everything you do will get you far. 

However, it must be recognized how intimidating it can be to be an intern. Interns are extremely vulnerable, and it feels like you are going to mess up every little thing, especially when you mess up the food orders on lunch duty. There are challenges with being “unofficial” in an office full of “official” employees. These challenges include always making sure you are saying the right thing, not asking too many questions but always asking enough of them and most importantly, getting things done on time. 

Senior nursing student, Maggie Mick, told The Villanovan about her internship experience this past summer in Chicago, IL.

“There were definitely highs and lows of being an intern,” Mick said. “My biggest challenge was gaining enough confidence to do tasks on my own. This can be really nerve-wracking as a nurse. However, when my coworkers and mentors trusted me enough to do things on my own, it was extremely rewarding. I also loved getting to know everyone on my unit and forming relationships with everyone.” 

Mick’s experience is extremely relatable. Earning the responsibility of taking on tasks alone is one of the best and one of the scariest parts of being an intern. But an internship is a growth period. There are times where you will be told no or that something is not good enough, but that is just reality. 

Being an intern is all about taking constructive feedback and learning from your mentors. In an internship, you may be handed tasks you never thought you would be in charge of, which makes things a bit spontaneous. It shows you that, in the real world, your skillset is never limited. Cleaning the dishes after the lunch break or organizing filing cabinets were probably not mentioned in the job description you applied for, but having someone to do the little things around the office affects the team as a whole.

Other struggles may include some lulls in the day with no work or days where you feel like you are drowning in work. Especially if you are getting little to no pay, pursuing an internship can be difficult. 

If you take one thing from reading this article, let it be to be the most enthusiastic and helpful intern you can, and every minute of it will pay off. Do the small tasks that nobody else wants to do because your work will never go unnoticed, and it will lead you to more connections than you ever could have imagined.