Internships provide real-world experience

Keith Cousins

Saddleback College offers students the opportunity to learn about and gain internships in various fields. Internships are essential to gaining employment in these economic times and employers are much more likely to hire someone who has completed a program.

Part-time business instructor Marge Nielson stresses the involvement with internship programs in order to find the right job after college.

“Students experience a high rate of success from internships, Nielson said. “Employers consistently name internship programs as one of the most effective tools they have for building their talent pools. Employers are more apt to hire an individual, after an internship, because the employer knows how the intern works and interacts.”

Career Placement Officer, Eric Hilden echoed Nielson and the positive outcome of internship programs.

“Internships are almost a necessity for students these days because of the diverse learning and skill development that happens,” said Hilden.

Hilden recently had a conversation with the Human Resources Director of the San Diego Zoo who commented, “I’ve instructed my human resources staff to ask applicants why they haven’t had internships or been involved on campus if their resume is filled with casual summer employment.”

The program is very diverse and there are a lot of ways to gain an internship and the process is very similar to applying and attaining a job in the business world.

In order to gain college credits for the internship, a prospective student needs to sign up for CWE 180 and then choose an internship through resources such as the Gaucho Jobs and the Counseling and the Center for Career and Life Development.

“After getting the professor’s approval to sign up for the internship [CWE 180] the student, employer and professor will meet to develop learning goals and objectives for the internship,” said Nielson. “A student may earn one unit, up to four units, for every 6o hrs of non-paid or 75 hours of paid work experience.”

Students gain a great deal of knowledge and experience through participating in an internship program. Brittany Baade is a internship program success story.

“I have been at my internship at Universal Music Group since the beginning of January and I absolutely love it,” Baade said. “I am learning so much about the music industry and the people I work with are very nice and fun.”

Students interested in pursuing an internship can go to the CCLD for more information and free workshops.

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