Gaining a wealth of real-world work experience

By Val Williams

There are many types of internship models. In this article, we will be showcasing the college internship. Today, we know that many, but not all, colleges and universities will require their students to complete an internship in order to graduate. Of the many benefits of completing an internship, one of the most important is the student’s discovery of whether or not they are suited for and enjoy, the field they interned in.

So what is an internship? It’s a period of time, approximately 10 weeks to three months, where a student can gain college credits by selecting a company that supports their field of study and will teach them “the ropes” of their business. Having this real time exposure to what today’s employers expect from their employees, offers a student a more relatable and realistic view of what to expect upon graduation. The opportunity can be paid or unpaid, but the value to the student for receiving this “real world” work experience is priceless.

Furthermore, if a college student finds themselves unsure of their chosen career path, time spent in an internship brings firsthand experiences, clarity, and a better idea of exactly what industry suits them best. This reminds me of a young lady who felt she wanted to get her degree in computer science simply because her parent worked in that field and she liked the income potential. After completing three years of study, she discovered she was more of a people person and a job in computer science would not be as fulfilling. Imagine the emotional and financial stress of having to find a new career path one year shy of getting your college degree?

I cannot encourage today’s students enough on the benefits of completing an internship prior to graduating. The wealth of experience will assist you in landing the job you desire.

If you are interested in learning about career seeker services and the NextGen young adult program at CareerSource Brevard, visit our website at


Val Williams is a work-based training specialist at CareerSource Brevard, a regional public/private partnership and part of a statewide network of 24 regions, known as CareerSource Florida.