A Peek Inside the Internship Experience
With the job market as competitive as ever, internships not only offer students a firsthand look into life on the job, but also a boost in the job hunt.
“At this stage of our lives, nothing is insignificant; each experience will add something to you either in the short term or the long term," said Marwan Kamel, a mechanical engineering graduating senior who interned in General Electric’s (GE) Power and Water sector. "It is very important for AUCians to get out of their comfort zones and start their careers early in order to explore their interests, relate their academics to real life, and strengthen their resumes and personalities,”
Rachel Naguib, a Middle East Studies major, shared the same viewpoint. “I discovered during my internship at British Petroleum that following my passion means mastering what I want to do and finding my voice,” she said.
Working on GE’s Power Generation projects, Kamel gained technical expertise and networked within his field. Both, he expects, will help him begin his professional career. “From a technical point of view, GE gave me an edge over many other undergraduates, as well as improving my personality as an engineer and adding value to my resume,” Kamel explained. “In addition to that, internships give the students like me a great chance to network and build relations with people in the market. Networking is one of the most important aspects in any internship, as it will open new horizons once you graduate.
Rana Gouda, a business marketing graduating senior, agreed, noting that her internship with Microsoft Egypt challenged her to think critically about problems. “Working in a huge corporation like Microsoft, which merges business and technology, is very exciting as well as dynamic, requiring you to stay up-to-date and think outside of the box,” said Gouda. “I learned that we shouldn’t rely on spoon-feeding, because challenges lay at the core of learning. We need to get out of our comfort zones and should stop saying, 'We can’t do it.' Everything is doable.”
Internships also give students the hands-on experience they need to complement their academic studies, pointed out Mohamed El Sadek, a petroleum engineering graduating senior. “In the major, we focus more on understanding the scientific concepts, not on engineering applications. Interning at Schlumberger gave me the chance to see how science is applied and how to make use of it in their various technologies,” he explained. “Now I know how different tools and software work and how to interpret the results using what I learned at AUC and at the company.”
Find an Internship
For students still exploring different career paths, internships can be also be a valuable tool by letting them test out different jobs, as Kamel pointed out. “From experience, I found out that not all internships are the same. Some give you the chance to have some hands-on experience, while others don't. But what is common to all internships is that the student gets a sense of what their work will be like if they choose a certain career, and that will definitely direct the students’ academic decisions in an early stage.”
Don't miss out on the opportunity to get first-hand experience and find out more about AUC’s internship program at the AUC Career Center website here.