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3 Things To Do Before You Start Your Internship

Last week, I started my new position as a Marriage and Family Therapy Intern. This is a huge step in my professional career and after these hours are complete, I will officially have a master’s degree. My internship is something that I put off for a long time, not only because I wasn’t looking forward to staying in America while my husband spends basketball season abroad, but also because I wanted to make sure I was ready. Once I decided it was time to take the plunge and got all my ducks in a row, I made a list of things that I needed to do before I started to ensure that I would get the most out of my experience and be a viable asset to my team. I’m happy to share that when I went in for my first day as an intern last week, I felt totally prepared. Here are the 3 things that I did before I started my internship that you should do too to guarantee a successful transition:

3 Things To Do Before You Start Your Internship

3 Things To Do Before You Start Your Internship

  1. Invest in appropriate work clothes: The lines between business attire and casual attire have gotten so blurred in the last couple of years. Whereas a few years ago, there was a clear cut “jeans are not business casual” rule, now, dark denim and a dressy blouse will almost always pass. Still, it’s always best to air on the side of caution. Invest in appropriate work clothes before you start your internship and be conservative in your choices. I spent an entire weekend shopping for business attire a few weeks before my start date, and I’m so glad that I did. When my supervisor informed me that denim would not be allowed in the office, I didn’t panic because I knew that I had purchased a few different pairs of slacks and a coupe of skirts that I could mix and match. It’s always best be overdressed and look a little more professional than to be underdressed and sloppy as an intern.

  2. Read, review, and research to prepare: I started my graduate program in 2013 and, 3 years later, quite a lot of information that I once knew like the back of my hand has slipped through the cracks. Spend some time reading your old textbooks and reviewing your old course materials before you start your internship. I definitely didn’t want to be rusty, so I skimmed through my ethics material, as well as a few of favorite counseling books to make sure that I was up on my game. It’s also very important to do a little research on your supervisor and where you’ll be working in order to familiarize yourself with how they do things and what they specialize in. Read his or her bio and stalk their website for any information that may be useful. Be sure to familiarize yourself with not only the company’s workplace policies, but also your program’s policies and guidelines as well.

  3. Check your schedule for any known conflicts: Most supervisors accept that interns are humans too and have lives outside of the office. Be sure to check your schedule for anything that may conflict with your hours before you start your internship so that you can talk about it on your very first day. The earlier you can let your supervisor know, the more likely he or she will be to allow you to miss or make up the day. I happen to have tickets to see Beyoncé when she comes to Atlanta in a few weeks, and I was totally up front and honest with my supervisor about the conflict. Because I let her know early and explained that I purchased the tickets months before I knew I would be working early evenings, she was totally understanding. The sooner you let your supervisor know of any scheduling issues you may have, the better. Always offer to make up any time you will miss on one of the days your supposed to be off to show that you’re responsible and care about your work.

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Welcome to the Thursday Three Link Up. Who doesn’t love sharing lists on their blogs?? Whether it’s 3 reasons you love your husband, 3 things you hate about graduate school, or 3 awesome birthday gift ideas, the Thursday Three Link Up is a place where you can share your posts and interact with other bloggers. Create an amazing post listing three things of your choosing and link up on LiveLifeWell, Royalty in Reality, or the Sparkling Southerner each and every Thursday! This week’s Thursday Three Featured Post is a must read for any blogger considering a reader survey! Find out what Ms. Naturally Random learned in her post, 3 Things I Learned From My Reader Survey.


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