Selecting a Valuable Work Experience

Your work experience is a vital step in preparing for your career. It is not about just fulfilling a required number of hours to get a grade for a college course. Whether paid or unpaid, part-time or full-time, an internship position or entry level job, your work experience allows you to apply what you are learning in your courses to tasks in your new career field.

Ask Yourself These Questions to Help You Select a Valuable Work Experience

1. Will this work experience be a valuable learning opportunity and a strong addition to my resume? (Your internship supervisor can also be an excellent reference for future jobs.)

2. Is there a future for me at this workplace? A possibility of promotion? (This is preferable.)

3. Am I taking the work experience course at the best time to prepare for my career? (The final semester is usually the ideal one because it may lead to a job after graduation.)

4. Does the college approve of this site for a work experience/internship? If you are not certain, check with the Career Resource Center to be sure before you proceed.

5. Is my position an internship or an entry-level job? An internship position is already approved by the employer as an internship. However, if you want to use a new entry-level job or your current job, have you confirmed that the company, supervisor, and H.R. all approve of your using this job as a work experience/internship? If you are using an entry-level job for your work experience, be sure the employer agrees to the following requirements:

  • The supervisor must sign and return a Letter of Understanding from the college during week 1 of the student’s work experience course.
  • The supervisor and student will have complete freedom to decide the student’s tasks during the work experience/internship.
  • The supervisor will need to be available for a site visit from the college, usually via a Zoom meeting.
  • The supervisor will need to complete an electronic evaluation of the student’s work. This evaluation will be sent by the college midway through the work experience/internship semester. 

6. Have I registered for the correct college course during the semester that I plan to complete the work experience hours? How many hours do I need? (See the Work Experience Information webpage for your program.)

7. Have I attended the Work Experience Webinar to help me understand how to complete my work experience and avoid unnecessary problems?

If you’ve answered all of these questions, you’re ready to begin one of the most exciting times in your career preparation! Applying classroom learning in a professional setting can contribute to your future success in ways you never imagined. So, start your work experience with confidence and get ready to grow!




Revised 12 July 2022

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Article ID: 146854
Tue 7/12/22 3:45 PM
Fri 7/28/23 7:51 AM

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