Internships are typically the preferred method of hands-on training for those people with ambitions in the business or executive world. In a professional or skilled trade context, this type of training is often referred to as apprenticing. Age is typically not a factor in acquiring this type of position but they are usually not permanent positions and can involve compensation or occur strictly on a volunteer basis.

In the case of an internship that is devoid of compensation, the monetary income is supplemented with valuable work experience in exchange for the labor provided to the company in return. Although it is not assured, undertaking an internship of this volition can play an intrinsic role in establishing permanent employment for a prospective individual.

Work Experience Internship

Internships1As previously mentioned, there are significant numbers of industries or businesses through which a person can obtain an internship and there is also a couple of differentiating structural agreements concerning the terms of a particular internship in the United States. For example, one type of internship (previously alluded to) is the work experience internship. Typically, this form of internship does not become accessible to students until the senior years of school.

This is a useful opportunity for students to spend time transposing theoretical understanding into practical application all while gaining valuable work experience for after graduation.

Research Internship

The second type of common internship in the United States of America is what is known as a research internship. This type of internship is only available to students who are on the cusp of graduation with the ideal outcome being to spring board from the internship into a full-time position researching for government or private industry upon successful completion of the current certificate.

The final product of these research internships involves defending a paper to the business or government entity that has contracted that research to determine where improvements or strides to broader success can exist.


Perhaps one of the most obvious benefits of undertaking a student internship is the specific pairing with pre-determined career options that allows the purposeful skill building capacities that pertain to such careers. Additionally, the contemporary job market can be very challenging for academics to breach because of a lack of specific focus for which this type of internship will provide.


It is also true that some states directly oppose unpaid internship platforms unless there is tangible compensation in the form of school-course credits at a pre-determined institution of learning. Thus, in states where this may be the case, such as California, there is a guaranteed return on investing this type of time and energy with a business or government entity.

Key Points

It is important to recognize that not all internships will resemble or reflect an average workday in the given circumstances. In fact, many positions will be structured to supplement the learning or hands-on nature of training that would exist in the classroom setting. Additionally, this training is not being supplied with the intent of existing employees being displaced, but rather to acquire knowledge from the people considered to be established in a particular role.

It is also important to consider that not every employer will perceive a benefit for providing internships and may have to go out of their way in daily operations to facilitate a smooth transition for incoming interns. Subsequently, not all interns will be guaranteed full-time employment at the conclusion of their internship, depending on the business or government entity and the structure of the internship itself. In cases where unpaid internships exist, it is consequently important to remember that monetary compensation is not a guarantee.