The Ultimate Guide to Balancing an Internship and School

As the summer comes to a conclusion, college students anticipate the beginning of a new academic year. For many, this will be their first year in a college setting. For others, this are expected to balance their academic life and an internship. Although it seems difficult, it is possible– it simply requires advanced time management and organization skills. Here is a guide that will assist you in balancing an internship and school without the obligations of one role dominating the other.

ORGANIZE YOUR WEEK

Prior to the first day of your internship or school, allocate the appropriate amount of hours to each respective entity. For instance, if you are enrolled in classes that are set to occur on Tuesdays and Thursdays, attend to your internship needs on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The best way to do this is through an agenda or its digital equivalent, Google Calendar.

In addition, keep track of important dates, such as team meetings and deadlines. Internship or school assignments can become overshadowed by one another, which can result in mistakes or incomplete duties. Also, it can give your professors or internship supervisors the wrong impression about you. Prevent these errors by noting every single significant date down in a method that is visible to you.

ESTABLISH A WORK SCHEDULE

After organizing your workweek, it is time to establish what times in the day you wish to execute your responsibilities. Take into consideration what time of the day you work best: are you a morning person? Are you a night owl? Do you prefer to attend classes in the day or at night? Do you prefer to do your internship activities in the day or at night? All these questions provide answers that will assist you in curating the apt internship and school schedule for you.

Aim for consistency when tackling college courses and internship activities. Switching up the schedule can affect your level of productivity by relying too much on additional time on the subsequent weekdays to complete your tasks. A good rule of thumb is to allocate an appropriate amount of time for activities every single day as opposed to compiling all your work to be completed in one day. Therefore, you avoid burnout and accomplish much more in a shorter timeframe.

SET TIME FOR BREAKS

It is difficult to allocate time towards yourself when it feels like you have an endless list of things on your to-do list. However, it is crucial to set time aside for breaks to do activities you enjoy doing such as drawing, reading, journaling, socializing, etc. Do not drown in your responsibilities because this can rapidly produce burnout symptoms. It is necessary and acceptable to step away every now and again to recharge yourself. Do not sacrifice your mental health for the sake of prospering professionally.

COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR SUPERVISORS

As interns, we often deny ourselves a break because we do not want to lead our internship supervisors under the impression that we are not dedicated, hard workers. However, it is difficult to create balance as an intern and a full-time student. When the workload becomes overwhelming, communicate your struggles with your internship supervisor and professors. Do not feel discouraged from doing so as they were once students themselves. They both understand the difficulty associated with balancing school and an internship and will accommodate their tasks to your needs.

Contributor: Ashley Torres

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