15 April 2024

Why You Should Do A Summer Internship

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Not quite sure about the future of your career? Or are you exactly sure about what you want to do? Either way a summer internship is the perfect way to jump start your career. You’ll be vrooooming to your destination grad role in no time!

But why should you give up the glorious months of summer to sit behind a desk?  Well there’s actually a lot of reasons why. Internships provide value beyond the skills you learn and connections you make. 

Keep reading to find out more.

Understanding yourself better

Not to get all therapist-y on you but a summer internship is essentially a way to help you better understand yourself.

Being in the thick of it, actually working with people in your industry and having to take responsibility in the work world will show you what tasks you enjoy and, more importantly, what you don’t.

Working alongside someone with many more years of experience in your dream job will give you a really good idea of whether this is really the role for you. 

Perhaps you wanted to be a teacher, but your internship helped you realise it involves a bucket load of marking or maybe you were nervous about the workload of being a lawyer but your summer internship taught you that you were more than capable.  

Either way, you’ll leave not guessing, but knowing your strengths, weaknesses, what type of work fulfills you and what your professional goals are. And that, my friend, is invaluable information when it comes to choosing a career path. 

Understanding your industry better

 A lot of industries seem all glitz and glamour from the outside. You’ve watched Suits and want to be a lawyer? Or was it Emily in Paris that made you want to go into marketing? We’re all guilty of romanticizing a job when we see it from the outside.

You’ll learn a lot during your summer internship, It’s ins and outs, things you didn’t expect.Everything including:

  • the day to day tasks of someone in the industry 
  • the challenges they face 
  • jargon they use 
  • when their quiet/busy periods are. 

But getting that summer internship shows you the reality, the nitty gritty of what’s in store if you go down that line. And you may love it but if you don’t,  then it’s a good thing you didn’t wait till graduating to find out! 

The girth of insider info that a summer internship will throw upon you is the most important thing a university student can gain. You’ll learn about things like key softwares used in the industry, who your firm’s competitors are, how time-consuming the job is, what the perks are and much much more!

All this is hardly easy to find out without immersing yourself in a summer internship. 

“The insight scheme gave me a bigger picture as to why I chose to study law in the first place and how I could use the academic skills in a real-life professional environment.I was fortunate enough to receive a training contract offer. It truly tested all aspects of university studies and extracurricular opportunities, which was fantastic to experience every single day during the internship.”

Summer intern, DLA Piper

So once you’ve done a summer internship, you know exactly the type of person you are in a professional environment AND you know the ins and outs of your industry, the good, the bad and the dirty. 

If what you like to do matches the work available within your ideal industry, then you’re sorted! And if you realise the career path you initially had in mind is not for you, then congratulations, you’re a step closer to figuring out what career is best for you.

Brighten up your resume

The weather won’t be the only shiny, bright thing about your summer. Your CV and application cover letters are certain to have that post internship glow. The scope for recognition is massive and all your hard work is sure to show on paper.


Not only will you have a solid piece of experience on your CV and application letter but it’s a great talking point during interviews. You can pick out individual responsibilities you were given and challenges you overcame and use your summer internship to absolutely nail your future interviews.


Another way to showcase your internship is on good old LinkedIn. When you apply to your dream job in the future, trust us, they will most likely stalk you (not in a creepy way, just on LinkedIn).

So make sure your profile is looking 10/10. You can add your experience to the work experience section including a description outlining your role and the skills you gained. 

If your employer decides to endorse you on LinkedIn, that’s the cherry on the cake. Employer endorsements add that extra bit of credibility to your profile when others look at it. 

Don’t have a LinkedIn Profile yet? Fix that immediately. Here’s our guide to creating the ultimate linkeidn profile 


That gorgeous employer reference may be just the thing you need to get your dream grad role. And a reference coming from an employer from a summer internship looks a lot better than coming from that one time babysitting job you did for your mum’s friend.

Want some other tips on how to jazz up your application – here are some really useful tidbits directly from employers:

Building a network 

You’ve already started to build your network whether you realise it or not. Your peers at university plus your lecturers and tutors are all part of your network, but what will make you stand out from the crowd is having industry professionals within your network.

A summer internship is the perfect way to meet a wide breadth of people. The experience  doesn’t just extend your network to the people in your firm but also any clients or customers you may interact with.

Building this network will open door after door and perhaps even a window.

If you really wow your employers they might even offer you a spot on their grad scheme after you complete university.

They could even fast track your application in the future or introduce you to someone who will become your future employer. You can never go wrong with growing your list of contacts.

Do something worthwhile

Summer internships can actually be quite enjoyable.

During your time at the company you’ll get to take part in a wide range of opportunities professionally but also socially. 

You may get the chance to attend events, go on trips, circle around different departments. 

Some companies have lavish summer parties or team days you can attend, so don’t assume that in every case it’s going to be you sitting miserably at a desk the whole time. That’s usually far from the case.

Who knows you may even become besties with other students interning there.

And getting paid is also a fabulous added bonus. So you’re learning, whilst adding to your CV, and getting paid. It’s a win win win.

Have we inspired you to apply for a summer internship? Start searching right away. RateMyPlacement has open summer internships for Barclays, Savills, EY, Deloitte, Bloomberg and so many more.