Internship advice for students

Ronald Simone works as the Mayor’s Assistant for Mayor Patrick Rosenello in North Wildwood, NJ. He is a graduate of the Catholic University of America with a BSBA in Marketing, and a Master of Public Administration Certificate from Rutgers University. Originally from the Northeast Philadelphia area, memories of lifeguarding and his infatuation with the sea brought him back down to North Wildwood, NJ, where he has been working for over a year. In his free time, Ron likes to surf, snowboard, run, and swim. He enjoys competition and strives to excel in anything he pursues.

North Wildwood, NJ –You can scourer the internet for days, weeks, and months looking for the right internship. There are plenty of sites that can help you along the way: interships.com, monster.com, simplyhired.com and many more. There you will create a username, password, and profile which register’s you into the website’s database allowing companies of interest to contact you. Now that the basics on where to start are covered, we can get to the message. This message is for those that think they might have a good internship lined up, but in reality are blinded by the big name the company represents.
Be cautious when contacted by a major corporation. Unless you are being contacted directly by their corporate office or HR department, more than likely you will be interning in a branch sales position. For some, it’s easy, just a thing to write off for college credits, a good way to make a quick buck through commission, but for me it was hell. Traveling 45 minutes to a crammed tiny office by 8:00 am, immediately getting on the phones to make cold calls, and constantly being hung up on was a daily occurrence while interning for a large name branch insurance company. I was given a script and a prepaid cell phone. On the script, it stated that we cannot say we are calling from the major insurance company and listed a completely different insurance company that I must represent myself as. The deceitfulness ate away at my morals as I cold called person after person trying to sell them a plan they truly did not need. Not the ideal first internship I had in mind. All in all, I left after 3 months learning nothing of value that I could apply to the position I currently hold. If sale’s is for you, then an internship like this might be good. For me, it was not. So always be cautious when pursuing an internship, and make sure that the work you will be doing is something of your interest.
It wasn’t until late junior year when I scored the internship of my dreams, which exponentially prepared me for the position I hold today. I was an intern for a Congressman on Capitol Hill for a year and a half. There I wrote letters, congressional record entries, and truly learned how to help people. Do you know how you truly help people in government? You talk to them. And don’t just talk to them; you have to try to be in control of the conversation, while also letting the person vent about the root of their problems. You have to assure the caller that their problems will be remediated, which they will, but it will not happen overnight. The values I learned from this internship are vast, and can be directly applied to the workload I perform in my job today. I am grateful for the friends I met, the things I learned, and the values I am now able to apply thanks to the internship the Congressman. My advice to those still searching for an internship, make sure that it is something you love and something that will help build values for your future.

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