The Importance of Interning

Contributing Writer

At the end of the spring 2015 semester, I chose to complete a work-study class to finish up my Psychology minor. It was by far the most amazing experience I have ever been through for several different reasons. You get to experience being around other people, learn about where they came from and you gain an understanding of the difference in people’s raising and background. 

I interned at Freedom Hill Recovery Home for Women located on Double Springs Road, just up the road from Piedmont College. It is a place where women who have addictions, such as alcohol, marijuana or methamphetamine dependence, go to recover from their addiction. In the beginning, it was really hard for me to understand why the women felt the need to take drugs. I couldn’t help but relate to the pain they caused their families. I have a cousin that has had the same issues. The whole situation with my cousin frustrated me even more because she was my role model. 

I noticed within the first month that I was extremely uncomfortable being around the women at the rehabilitation center, which helped me to recognize a deep feeling of animosity toward people who use and have used drugs and alcohol to get away from their problems. I later realized that this animosity was more than likely attributed to my cousin’s use of drugs. 

The whole experience of spending ten hours a week at a place that would give me insight into my future career, psychiatric nursing, for a whole semester really made me feel like I was finally able to understand myself better than ever before. Plus, I was finally able to apply the knowledge that I had learned in class, which made everything I was learning seem more realistic. It was a very intense learning process that I had never anticipated going through. However, by going through it, I became a better person. If an interning opportunity ever presents itself to you, from personal experience, it is the one thing you will never regret doing in your college career. 

Interning has so many benefits, such as learning about yourself, finding confidence in yourself and being able to apply your knowledge to real situations, which creates an extraordinary learning experience. Whether you have always had confidence or even if your confidence has been suppressed, interning will enhance your confidence. Learning about who you are is so important, especially in college because this is the point in your life when you are finally able to explore your personal beliefs, which are what make you who you are. 

As you discover who you are, you will also begin to realize how similar or different your beliefs have become from what you were raised to believe. Interning is only the beginning; other experiences such as Maymesters, Study Abroad Programs and the Compass Program can further enhance the experience of finding yourself, who you are and where you belong in the world.