Tuesday, December 14, 2010

B School student and choice of mid-term summer internship

A very important aspect of B school training is the "summer placement" also termed as "mid term placement" and is a unique aspect of a Business school.

What is the purpose of summer internship? The basic purpose is to withdraw a student temporarily from the class room format into an open learning format of an organization. During his or her short duration within an organization he gets a feel of the practical aspects of an organization in relation to the class room inputs during the first year of training. The student is expected to make a report of the training along with a certification from the organization to which he had been attatched.

One of the key espects of internship is that it generally ahould follow the following principles so to say for internship to be truly fruitful. When a student chooses summer internship he should do so with an open mind meaning;
  • place open
  • organization open
  • specialization open
  • methodology open

A student seeking internship should generally not have geographical fixation which means that I will only do internship at a particular place. It can technically mean anywhere around the country. Geographical fixation can be a characteristic of final placement and makes sense but not during summer internship. The best summer internships have been done by students from a place or town to which they were totally new and the experience so obtained is rewarding for all time.

Summer internship must be "organization open " which means the student must be willing to work in any kind of business organization. It could be retail; cargo;manufacturing; supply chain;banking; insurance etc as each of these sectors by itself can give a learning experience of a special kind to the student. In the present world it is an asset to work and get experience and learning from across various enterprises and the learning is priceless and applicable to situations in the future.

Summer internship must be " specialization open". There is and should not be a relation between the specialization what a student is likely to take and choice of internship. In fact the choice of final specialization is best done after the course of internship.It may not be the best of approaches to say that I would do work only in a specific area like marketing; this is counter productive. Be open to work and get exposure into various sectors of an organization.

And finally summer internship must be "methodology open" which means that the process of internship need not be tied-down across the board to any particular format and the methodology can be changed en course if need be. What this really means is that the frame work of training need not be rigid. What starts as a training on a rotational basic can be discontinued en-course if need be and made into a focus mode. Even if the training is of a rotational kind the duration of training in the various departments can be modified if need be.

Student must have a precise idea of what is expected of them during internship and the truth of the matter is nothing much. At a basic level spend eight hours every day watching the various activities of the organization. Also do not expect to be placed in the organization where you do internship and never show any inclination what so ever. It rarely turns into reality. You need not go overboard to do any tough work and prove your self. Summer Internship is not a platform towards this end.

Making the final report of the training can be better managed if the student types one page a day into a MS Word file about the activities on a daily basis. At the end of training this will turn out to be roughly 50 pages of written matter. Once you complete training on-site edit the text and create a front end and a back end. Front-end is you make a detailed description of the organization and the industry. In the back-end include findings of the study and conclusions. Use matter from the internet wherever feasible. Edit the final report in the final form in the way the institute to which you are attached would like to see it and interact with your faculty supervisor to achieve this end.

A word of request to organizations. Make use of your interns purposefully and your most important task is to watch them and not use them. Always treat them with the respect due and note that if you can leave a good impression in the mind of trainees you have possibly found a very ardent future employee. When the student finishes the training give an un-obtrusive and un-offensive feed back of what the person is all about and that would make a world of difference.

Finally, students should note that finding internship is not a difficult task. Enable yourself on this activity during the last month of your second semester and write and meet atleast ten organizations and lo you will find that you have atleast more than one internship to choose from.

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