Taking the summer internship route to success

By Radhika Bhirani, IANS

New Delhi : Gone are the days when students used to wake up late in the morning and laze around during their summer vacations. Gaining work experience, enhancing qualifications and bolstering resumes seems to be the in thing for present-day college goers.

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The urge to fight stiff competition and outshine others drives these students to be on a constant lookout for good opportunities in their respective field of work.

Karan Kumar, an engineering student, said: "Every profession is getting increasingly competitive these days. It is a bonus to have acquired on the job training prior to stepping into any profession since it certifies us as experienced candidates".

While some students work during their vacations to gain experience, others are lured by attractive payslips or stipends.

"I cannot accept the idea of working for free. So I joined a call centre for one month and earned Rs. 10,000," said Archit Anand, a student of Delhi University.

Call centres are known to pay a significant amount to students who work part-time. A majority of companies in other industries, however, do not follow the concept of paying a stipend. They might sanction a meagre amount but even that is rare.

"When we join as trainees in an office, we try to give our best input. Demanding some reward for our hard work seems quite sensible to me," added Archit.

Experimentation is another motive for doing internships. When students are unsure about a field they want to join in future, they work as trainees in that field to weigh the pros and cons of the work culture and decide accordingly.

Bhavna Khullar, a mass communication student, said: "There is a lot of options to choose from. This has made me indecisive about what I really want to do. So, internships will help me decide if I want to join a field in future or not".

Multinational Companies (MNCs), call centres and NGOs often provide part-time job opportunities to students. But some students find it difficult to decide which organisation to join.

Ritika Chawla, an undergraduate student at the Symbiosis Centre for Management Studies in Pune, said: "The big names in the industry hardly give us any work if we join them but add value to our CV. The smaller companies treat us as regular employees and disseminate quality work but their name doesn't always enhance our CV. This adds confusion."

Sneha Sharma, another student at the same institute, feels otherwise.

"It may be true for a majority but not true in all cases. Wipro is a big name but they teach their interns a lot," she said.

Many students visit job portals like Naukri, TimesJobs and Monster in search of vacancies and some recruitment agencies also cater to their requirements.

Interestingly, many private colleges have placement cells that collaborate with companies to provide suitable summer internship opportunities to their students.

Kulpreet Kaur, the managing director of Impact Public Relations, said: "The dedication and zeal to work are two primary qualities we look for in interns. In return, we as seniors wish to help them in understanding and learning the practical know-how of what they would have learnt theoretically".