Many of those looking to work in the fashion industry consider interning to be a must, but how many could intern and study at the same time? Gaining experience through interning will no doubt be impressive on a CV and will also enhance your workplace skills but if you are unable to take time off to intern, why not try completing some essential work experience around your studies?
Common blockers for those considering this are: the amount of work required, how they will fit both into their lives, will coursework suffer, how will they find a company who will accept part time interns and will there be time for a social life! However it is now a very common approach for those who are studying in cities where lots of the fashion brands and companies operate in.
Here are 5 strong tips on how you can still benefit from a great education as well as hands on industry experience.
Separate both - It is important to fully concentrate on the task at hand. If you split your week between both studying and interning it is important to mentally separate the two. You don’t want to be studying at university and also be worrying about work you have to get done at your internship and vice versa. It will show to your employer or teacher that you are distracted. By taking on both you need to ensure that either one won’t be affected. In order to get the best experience from both, don't let your mind wander and ruin both opportunities for you.
Something has to give - interning is a great opportunity to learn a role in the industry you want to go into, however it is a time consuming addition to your everyday life and therefore you may have to re organise other areas in order to do both. Compromising is key. It won’t last forever so be focussed for a little while and congratulate yourself later.
Be organised - it is no secret that in order to work and study at the same time, you need to be extremely organised. Give yourself the tools in order to be successful at both things. Top tip: have two separate notebooks and a large diary to fit in both schedules. You will have to learn your schedule meticulously and make sure your notes and ideas for both areas don’t get muddled. Plan your time effectively, being organised will eliminate the amount of stress you put yourself under. Having everything clearly laid out with help keep your mind clear!
Plan something for yourself each week. - Working around the clock can be exhausting, studying and interning at the same time is extremely impressive and not for everyone. Be sure to not allow your whole week to consist of work work work, treat yourself and do something fun once a week. Cinema trip with friends? Visits to the gym? Quiz night at the pub? Whatever it may be, make sure you do something for you.
Be realistic - we all are guilty of sometimes being unrealistic with ourselves. You need to look out for yourself and be honest with what you can do and what is manageable. If you are unable to attend a work event, simply let your manager know. You are not a superhero, you can’t do everything all the time therefore set yourself manageable but realistic boundaries.
Having an open and honest relationship with your manager and team at work is vital, as is your relationship with your teacher or lecturer. You must make sure the people around you understand all your commitments and therefore will be on hand if you need assistance or guidance.
Thousands of students have managed to intern and study at the same time, being organised, up front and realistic will help you achieve both. Remember this period of your life won’t last forever, utilise it while you have the chance!
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