Student Internships in Nigeria come with a lot of positive expectations and excitement. It is one phrase that seems to go hand in hand with the notion of a “holiday” for many Nigerian students.
For a lot of students in Nigerian tertiary institutions, their course of study appears vague. It is until there’s exposure in the field of learning that it becomes even clearer. Student Internships are solutions to the need for practicality to the theoretical learning ground provided by the University.
Usually a good number of Nigerian students see the internship period as a mini-break from school. Some see it as a great time to raise money from other things outside the field of study. Some would refer to it as ‘hustling’. Despite the checks and measures put in place for monitoring these students, it seems a majority would rather choose to take time off and become truants for the period of time coming. Who doesn’t want breaks anyway?
WHAT STUDENT INTERNSHIPS REALLY ARE;
JUST BEFORE YOU DODGE THAT INTERNSHIP PROGRAMME, HERE’S WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW;
An internship is defined as a short period of time spent by an undergraduate or student at a firm related to their field of study. This period of work is usually paid, unpaid or partially paid. The student exchanges labor for a wealth of experience or knowledge. As unbelievable as it sounds, internships are the greatest time to build the right foundation of networks in one’s field of study.
Student Internships come with a lot of free knowledge;
Damn right, it is absolutely free. You ever just wander into an office and they let you stay for months? Nobody will hand you that on a platter of gold. Most times all the experience you’ll ever need for your first job is from your internship. That’s why it’s very important to find a good and efficient outlet for your internship. Don’t just do it anywhere. Go for the top shots, find the best at the game and go for it. There’s a reason why they’re the best, they do things others have no idea about. What’s more, it gives you first-hand experience: in case you want to start off on your own, immediately after school.
Alfred had this to say about his internship at a top quality-control firm in Lagos; “I’d never really understand the essence and importance of food quality tests until after my internship. With them, I was able to understand the necessity for a standard food quality lab and that guided my choices when I decided to start off a food company of my own.”
That’s your free ticket to networking!
Yes, certainly you won’t be working all alone. At your place of internship, you will be exposed to various professional and more experienced personnel in your field of work. They could be people with vast knowledge of experience, who you may not have access to on normal days. Your Student internship period is a great time to make useful contacts, not just for jobs but also for future purposes and referrals.
Along the course of your career growth, you might be required at some point to append the signature of a professional colleague you may have worked with in previous years or worked under his tutelage or supervision. It Is important that you create a long-lasting stable relationship with people of this sort, supervisors and co-workers. In doing so, you provide yourself great networking opportunities for future purposes.
You could be retained!
A lot of you already are thinking, not obtainable in Nigeria. Well…Hello, yes you could be retained! Every firm and organization interested in growth most certainly loves employing persons indicating exceeding enthusiasm at helping the growth of the company. How does this happen? Take your student internship as seriously as you’ll take your actual job. It’s a job anyway but because it’s being provided under an educational umbrella, it is usually easy to forget this easy way of selling oneself.
Here’s how it works; you are most likely not going to get the same pay as normal workers, but you should let the work you put in exceed the value of the pay you get; let your output exceed their input. It’s a huge way of impression, imagine you were an employer getting more output than the remuneration you give, it tells a lot about the the intern as a staff.
You get a break actually
Oh yes, you were right from the start. You do get a break from the monotony of attending lectures. I know that sucks for a lot of students so this definitely is good news. Your classroom automatically changes from the norm to something out of the norm. It works absolutely for students who can’t deal with the repeated cycle of learning in the same environment.
You get to explore new states and countries
Internships would be a great time to explore new cities, meet new people and cultures and learn even more. This works for those who their place of internship would be in places far away from their school environment. The peculiarity of some courses like archaeology or geology, etc.), would demand this.
HOW DO YOU MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR INTERNSHIP?
First of all, learn! Be sure to learn all you can. Good thing there’s no pressure to pass exams this time. Do well to learn as much as you can hands-on. Don’t just go to your place of internship with your logbook alone. Go along with a book, something you can put down new things with. Your student’s logbook may be unavailable in the future, don’t count on it.
Grab as much as you can and yup! Ask questions, at any point of confusion. There’s possibly no large classroom or classmates to jeer at you. What’s more, it shows how interested you really are in the training you’re undergoing.
Turn up to work on time! It’s a huge learning time. Learn the most of work ethics, this is the only time you won’t get judged, so do your best to learn all the necessary work ethics you need. Don’t be late, dress smartly, smile and comport yourself. Everyone already expects that you behave and act accordingly. Maintain the necessary cordial relationship between colleagues and do your best to set standards if you can. Be accommodating, get used to teamwork and leadership roles when they come in play.
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