When an education isn’t enough

With the economy continuing to spiral out of control, finding a job directly out of school will be harder than ever. When you graduate, what will separate you from every other student graduating with a similar degree?

It is absolutely essential that you seek to differentiate yourself from the rest of the herd. A high GPA may look great on your résumé, but with a limit set at 4.0, odds are someone else has the exact same grades. Relying on your education alone is no longer enough to secure a job upon graduation.

Internships are becoming more valuable than ever, as they provide real-world experience to correspond with your classroom learning. That stuff you’re reading in class? People actually use that in ways besides homework and tests. An internship provides students the opportunity to apply their newly acquired knowledge outside of the classroom in a work environment.

Finding an internship will help you secure a job after graduation because many employers feel that many graduates do not have the practical skills necessary to excel. Despite possessing the education level necessary for the job, students lack the experience employers now expect. An internship offers students a glimpse of life after graduation and what to expect as they enter the workforce.

Internships are typically short term (a semester or two) and can be paid or unpaid. Because of the short-term nature of internships, they also provide insight into whether or not students could see themselves in that particular line of work. This also helps to prevent students from graduating and entering a field of work they may not even enjoy.

College credit is often offered, so be sure to check with your department about internship courses. Many departments will also help you to find internships related to what you hope to do after college. The SECE website also lists various internships available to UH students. Many major corporations also offer internships available for application online. Use every resource you have at your disposal to select the internship that is right for you.

Education alone is no longer going to secure the high-paying job your high school guidance counselor promised you. The deterioration of the American education system has led to universities churning out graduates largely unprepared to enter the workforce. The intended goal of higher education is not being accomplished. Your college diploma is no longer enough for corporate America’s rising expectations. Take the initiative and prepare yourself for your future. Find an internship related to your studies, and set yourself apart from the thousands of other college graduates that would otherwise appear just like you on paper.

To view the original Ka Leo version click here.

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