Internships. They are both vital and necessary no matter what field you are preparing for. Internships provide you with experiences and knowledge that you can obtain from a textbook or classroom. They help shape you for your future jobs.
I have had several internships in my life. I interned for the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Athletic Department in the Event Management department. It was by far one of the most amazing experienced. I not only learned so much about the daily operations of events at a Division 1 school, but I met some wonderful people and got to see some really cool behind the scenes places. It is still something that I draw back on from time to time.
I also interned for Nitta’s Bed & Breakfast. It was very short term because of emergency back surgery and a life changing family event, but nonetheless it was a very valuable experience where I learned a lot about the catering world.
Finally, I interned here at The Leadership Center right after I graduated college. Some people are opposed to interning after they have received their degrees because they feel that they have earned the right to a position. For me, it was another opportunity to learn and grow in a different part of the hospitality field. Eventually the hard work paid off and I became a “bonafide” employee with a title and in a few short years was placed in charge of The Leadership Center’s interns which has been a really great experience.
I have had a couple of wonderful interns by the names of Josh and Morgan. Both were in different places in their lives–Josh, a college freshman, hoping to become a physical therapist and Morgan, a high school senior, hoping to pursue degree in ag business. I know nothing about the fields that they are pursuing and they didn’t really know anything about a retreat and conference center, but hey learned some really valuable traits that will help them no matter what they do in life. If you want to check out some fun blog posts during Josh’s time as an intern you can check them out here.
People have the stereotype that internships are full of getting coffee and doing some really insignificant duties. Not here. You are a part of the team. You learn all aspects of our business including housekeeping, maintenance, kitchen, front office and even have the opportunity to learn about the accounting/payroll sides to our business. One thing that we incorporate into our internship is the opportunity to create your own project. Leave your own legacy behind. For Josh, he created a lot of marketing tools for us, but he really worked hard on the first summer fundraiser, An Evening Stroll. He helped make calls, gather auction items and see the event through. Morgan created an excel spreadsheet for us that allows us to track and record data in regards to client geography, event type, etc. It has been incredibly helpful to be able to figure out some really cool statistics. This internship really is what you make of it.
Now I am sure you are wondering why I have told you my internship history and the history of our recent interns. Well we are always looking for interns, but we have been awarded a grant from the state to help compensate our intern and this summer we do not currently have an intern. We would love for you to apply if you are interested or to pass the information around if you know of someone. This doesn’t necessarily have to be for right now, but it can be if it works out. It can also be an internship for during the school year. If you would like more information you can check here for a description or you can email me here.
Internships are a great opportunity and even though you may not be pursuing a career in the hospitality field, that doesn’t mean you can’t obtain some really valuable and remarkable skills for whatever industry you are working towards. Don’t limit yourself because you can achieve wonderful things if you put your mind to it and work hard!