In the world of COVID-19, virtual may be the new normal for a lot of people. Going forward, school, work, and meetings will likely include an online or remote element. The same can be said for internships.
Internships provide great opportunities for college students to gain insights into the work they will be doing in their chosen career path. However, an internship where the work is done primarily in a remote setting can come with a few added difficulties.
Here are some tips on how you can make the most of a virtual internship:
Ensure that you have good communication skills
It is hard sometimes to understand certain projects or work you may be assigned. Do not be afraid to reach out and ask for clarification. A simple email or call could be the difference between completing the project successfully and messing it up. Do not be afraid to ask questions, you are not in the physical office building, so communication is essential!
Establish a schedule
Being a virtual intern means there is a lot more room for distraction than if you were in person. By establishing set times throughout the week to work on assignments for your internship, you will be organized and get things done on time.
Plan introductory meetings with the staff you will be working with
Establishing good working relationships is a little more difficult when you are interning virtually, but it is not impossible! Ask your supervisor which staff members you’ll be working closely with. Then schedule meetings with those staff members and get to know them. Just because your internship is virtual does not mean you can’t create mutually beneficial relationships with your coworkers!
Get the most out of the internship that will benefit you in the future
Internships may be a little different virtually, but that does not mean they are any less important. Work hard on all the projects you are given, ask for feedback, establish what kind of work you enjoy, and make sure to challenge yourself. If you feel like your workload is a little light, ask your boss for a few additional projects. A virtual internship may be hard at first, but you can get just as much out of it as you would if you were in person!