The Golden Rules of Internship Etiquette for College Students

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Before you secure an internship, it is important that you know the golden internship rules. It is important to know these rules because your internship may determine your entire future. For most people, their first internship is their first professional experience, so you want to be sure that you make a good first impression. Not only do you want to put on your best professional clothing – you also want to act the part too. This requires confidence, always having a smile and making sure that you are polite. Of course, you don’t want to become a ‘yes’ man or woman, but you do want to have gusto when you get assignments from your boss or manager. There are also a number of other rules that you want to keep in mind. Here are the golden rules of internship etiquette for college students.

Always Show Up on Time

Of course, this one goes without saying – you want to show up early to your internship. In fact, you may want to show up slightly early. Indeed, you want to be the first one to the office. This will show that you have initiative and the motivation – it will also show that you have passion for your job.

Never Say ‘No’ to a Task

It doesn’t matter if you are going to AU online or Chicago State University, your internship may also be counting for credits, which will go towards your degree. If you are constantly saying ‘no’ or pushing back against tasks at your internship, you may get asked to leave and thus lose your credits. This could put you in a situation where you are extending your time and college, and you will be further and further away from your dream job.

Be Polite

On top of making sure that you never say ‘no,’ you also want to be polite and you want to have good manners at all times. You want to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ whenever dealing with a manager or boss. If you aren’t polite, it won’t

show gratitude, which is something you’ll need doses of when you are in a position of opportunity. Not everyone gets to land an internship, so you want to be as appreciative as possible.

Ask a Lot of Questions

It is also critical that you ask a lot of questions. The more questions you ask, the more curious you will seem. The hidden benefit of this is that you will learn a lot. Plus, if you aren’t sure how to do something, you don’t want to lie and say you know how to do it. You want to ask how to do it, receive directions and then complete the task with confidence.

Make Eye Contact

On top of everything, you want to make eye contact with everyone that you meet. This will show that you are engaged and interested. If you don’t make eye contact, you won’t seem entirely trustworthy. In the end, an internship requires that you are constantly connecting with your fellow employees and other interns.

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Tim Hemingway is an education and entrepreneurship expert located in St. Paul, Minnesota. He is a frequent speaker at schools and universities across the world and an advocate for skill development programs and community outreach.

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