Despite what you may have seen depicted in movies and TV shows, most internships are about way more than just fetching coffee and slaving away in a file room (although, sorry, sometimes those tasks are on the to-do list). The fact is, internships are one of the best ways to land your dream job thanks to everything from real-world experience to networking opportunities in the industry. And if you’re interning at a company you’d love to work for, you’re already one step ahead.
Countless studies have shown a positive correlation between internship experience and full-time employment, and one 2012 survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges & Employers (NACE) revealed that more than 40 percent of new hires were expected to come from a company’s internship program. Clearly, it’s possible to turn that college requirement into an actual career. The tricky part is how, or more specifically, how to stand out in a sea of fellow interns and applicants gunning for the same potential position. Doing your internship duties (really well) is a start, but we’ve compiled a list of practical ways to graduate from intern to employee, using both our own experience and words of wisdom from hiring managers.