internship

24 Incredible Internship Facts that Will Make You Want One

In the 2015 comedy film The Intern, a 70-year-old retiree (played by Robert De Niro) becomes an intern at a Brooklyn-based ecommerce fashion startup.

You’re probably thinking this can never happen in real life. 

Well, think again.

Internships are an important part of many people’s lives – whatever stage of their lives they might be at. And we’ve got the internship facts to prove it.

The thing is:

An internship can help you acquire new skills that will last you a lifetime.

But what do the stats have to say? At Mark in Style, we decided to find out. 

Inspirational Statistics on Internships (Editor’s Choice)

  • 50% of internships result in full-time job offers.
  • Only 11.1% of respondents find their internships through a company website.
  • 56% of surveyed students are still searching for a job or internship amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Internship experience has been ranked by recruiters as the number one candidate criterion.
  • Four-fifths of students who have had an internship said their professionalism and work ethic were ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ improved by the experience.
  • Graduates with a paid internship are 34% more likely to receive at least one job offer upon graduation.
  • The number of work experience places available at the UK’s leading graduate employers increased by 1.8% in 2019.
  • Over one-third of UK employers stressed that it was either ‘not very likely’ or ‘not at all likely’ that a graduate with no previous work experience would be successful during their selection process.

General Statistics About Internships

1. Some US companies offer more than 1000 internships.

(Way Up)

One of the internship fun facts is that there are companies that hire more than 1000 interns a year. Way Up, a website which ranks US annual internship programmes, reveals some companies hire even more – three, four, or even five thousand interns. 

Also, did you know that there is a National Intern Day? We’ll definitely be raising a toast to that.

2. 50% of internships result in full-time job offers.

(Vault Internship Survey)

Vault surveyed nearly 14,000 current and former interns from more than 130 internship programmes asking respondents to rate and review their own internship experiences. 

Here’s the scoop:

One of the benefits of internships is the degree to which they have an impact on the intern’s job prospects and career path. And the good news is that half of all internships resulted in full-time job offers.

3. ‘Career advancement in the chosen industry’ is the number one deciding factor when choosing an internship.

(Vault Internship Survey)

Exploring potential career opportunities and getting a perspective and an understanding of the field is one of the reasons why internships are good for everyone. 

The thing is:

They allow us to learn about different expectations and approaches. Interns have the opportunity to get involved in the experience to see if the role is what they had in mind and if it is the right career choice for them.

4. ‘Pay’ is the number two deciding factor when choosing an internship.

(Vault Internship Survey)

When choosing an internship, there are several factors people take into account to make their decision. They range from the financial circumstances to the type of experience they want to gain, the purpose of the internship, and so on. 

That being said, the question of whether or not the position is paid is second only to career advancement in the chosen industry.

5. ‘Corporate culture’ is the number three deciding factor when choosing an internship.

(Vault Internship Survey)

The process of finding an internship is similar to a job search. In addition to the type of internship, the tasks performed during the day, and the benefit of the experience, it’s important to look at the organisation as a whole. 

Here’s why:

If the organisation fits well with the interns’ goals and personality, they will feel comfortable coming to work each day. They will also feel that the internship is suitable for them, and they will be able to apply what they have learned in their future work experience. 

This stimulates companies to include information about corporate culture on top of the list of the benefits of internships for college students on their websites and wherever they advertise internship opportunities.

6. Opportunity for a full-time job offer is the number four deciding factor when choosing an internship.

(Vault Internship Survey)

The best internships for college students are those that provide a learning environment, training, mentorship, and practical experience, as well as feedback. Click To Tweet

How does an intern work?

Here’s the deal:

An internship should allow the student to develop professionally while being supported by a trusted mentor who helps them to acquire the right skills for the career they are aiming for. 

At the same time, the mentor should provide feedback so that the intern can learn from their mistakes and eventually enter the world of work with a strong professional work ethic. And when ‘shadowing’ and hands-on experience are a central focus, these programmes – called externships – can be even more valuable in allowing the student to narrow down their preferred career path. 

7. 11.1% of respondents found their internships through a company website.

(Vault Internship Survey)

Various internship articles that deal with finding positions recommend that candidates search on company websites. Each company has a career page on its website and often a separate section for internships. 

In this way, students can be informed as soon as jobs are advertised, and they can start the application process as soon as possible.

8. 9.5% of respondents found their internships through referrals/friends and family.

(Vault Internship Survey)

Internship facts reveal that prospective interns occasionally find their jobs through people who could refer them to an employer or recommend them to others. Great letters of reference can result in a hiring manager or recruiter pulling an application out of a pile or an online queue. 

Now:

References are priceless because they reduce the hiring manager’s risk. So, it should come as no surprise that employers place great importance on them.

9. 9% of respondents found their internships through career fairs.

(Vault Internship Survey)

One thing you want to know about internships is that there are many ways to find one. When recruiting, companies don’t use one platform to announce an opportunity. 

The thing is:

Companies that offer internships for college students post internship positions on their websites as well as on internship boards. While students look mostly online, campus career fairs aren’t outdated. 

In fact, career fairs are a great way for students to learn more about internships and what to know about internships in general. Attending these events may result in an opportunity to meet face-to-face and learn about positions the old-fashioned way. 

10. 7.8% of respondents found their internships through professional networking.

(Vault Internship Survey)

Meeting new people is a great starting point in the search for interesting internships

Networking is key because new contacts have to be grown into lasting professional relationships. And those relationships have to be maintained. 

Students find connections in their previous or prospective companies and in their educational institutions as well as through relatives and neighbours.

11. 92.2% of respondents frequently used laptops when researching internships.

(Vault Internship Survey)

When researching internships, most interns rely on their laptops or smartphones.

What’s more:

37.9% frequently used smartphones, 19.9% frequently used desktop computers, and 5.5% frequently used tablets. 

Nowadays, students are finding everything online, from basic Congressional facts for internships to business paid internships for college students to fun internships for college students.

Facts on College Students With Internship Experience vs Without

People researching internship facts

12. Internship experience has been ranked by recruiters as the number one candidate criterion.

(Ripple Match)

Data shows internships are more valued than academics and extracurriculars – especially internships with certain companies. 

Check this out:

One survey required recruiters to rank the importance of factors like previous internship experience, GPA, major, extracurricular activities, and university prestige in potential candidates.

The results? 

Recruiters ranked internship experience as the most valuable piece of information for assessing the candidate fit for a role. Click To Tweet

The second most important criterion was a candidate’s major, followed by their level of leadership experience in an on-campus organisation. 

13. 57% of students who had an internship prior to graduation received a job offer.

(NACE)

What is the importance of an internship?

Entering a career is one of the reasons why are internships important. According to the results from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, more than half of all graduating seniors who applied for a full-time job (53%) received at least one job offer. 

Within this group, 57% were students who had an internship, and 43% were graduating seniors who did not have an internship.

In addition, students who completed at least one internship before graduation were more likely to receive more than one offer for a position after graduation. Those without an internship received 16% fewer job offers.

14. Graduates with a paid internship are 34% more likely to receive at least one job offer upon graduation.

(NACE)

According to the same study, whether students completed a paid or unpaid internship makes a difference in employability. The study showed that 66% of 2019 graduates who had a paid internship received a job offer. 

On the other hand: 

Just 43% of college students with internships that were not paid were offered a job. That means that those who graduate with a paid internship are 34% more likely to receive at least one job offer upon graduation.

And that certainly has an effect on college students’ mental health.

15. 47% of bachelor’s-level senior first-generation (FG) students reported participating in an internship.

(NACE)

Data from NACE’s annual Student Survey indicates that first-generation students are less likely to take part in internships in college than their non-first generation (NFG) counterparts.

Here’s the deal:

47% of bachelor’s-level senior FG students reported participating in an internship. In comparison, 53% of responding senior NFGs reported participating in an internship. 

In addition, FG students are more likely than their NFG counterparts to take part in an unpaid internship. Statistics on internships reveal 48% of the positions senior FGs took part in were unpaid, compared to about 43% for NFGs.

16. 78% of first-generation students find the internship experience ‘very’ to ‘extremely’ satisfying.

(NACE)

Although first-generation students are less likely to engage in paid internships, they are more likely to find the experience ‘very’ to ‘extremely’ satisfying than their NFG counterparts – 78% versus 75%. That’s one of the many important higher education statistics students and teachers need to bear in mind.

In addition to their greater sense of satisfaction, FG students are more likely to want to pursue a career in the same field as their internship program (58%) than NFG students (56%).

17. Four-fifths of students who have had an internship said their professionalism and work ethic were ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ improved by the experience. 

(NACE)

This is certainly one of the most crucial internship facts you’re likely to come across.

When students were asked about how their internship influenced their view of their career readiness competencies, FG students were more likely than NFG students to report that their internship had a significant positive influence. 

Nearly four-fifths of students responding to the survey who had had an internship and/or co-op said their professionalism and work ethic were ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ improved by the experience. 

18. 40% of students seek support to better leverage their personal networks.

(Social Hire)

Is getting an internship easy? 

Not really.

Students are looking for more information on their chosen career path and not simple questions such as what is an internship and when do summer internships usually start

They are willing to learn how to get there. So, it should come as no surprise that four in ten surveyed students were interested to know how to better leverage their personal networks. 

Furthermore, students without internship experience said they need help with resume design and interview preparation.

UK Interns

UK interns

19. Over a third of UK employers stressed that it was either ‘not very likely’ or ‘not at all likely’ that a graduate with no previous work experience would be successful during their selection process.

(High Fillers)

This represents how important are internships

When recruiters featured in the survey were asked how important is previous work experience when it comes to the selection process: 

Over a third warned that, in today’s competitive job market, it was either ‘not very likely’ or ‘not at all likely’ that a graduate who’d had no previous work experience would be successful during the selection process, irrespective of their academic achievements or the university they had attended.

20. The number of work experience places available for students and recent graduates has grown substantially, increasing by almost 50% between 2010 and 2017.

(High Fillers)

Almost three-quarters of the UK top graduate employers provided paid internships during the 2019 summer vacation, graduate employment statistics reveal. 

What’s more: 

Over two-fifths hosted course placements – structured work experience organised as part of university degree courses, which typically lasts between 6 and 12 months. It gives students first-hand experience of technical, commercial, or research roles. This includes paid internships in the UK for international students.

In the six years from 2010, the number of work experience places available for students and recent graduates grew substantially, increasing by almost 50% in total, almost double the rise in graduate vacancies over the same period.

21. The number of work experience places available at the UK’s leading graduate employers increased by 1.8% in 2019.

(High Fillers)

More than half of UK employers now offer work experience to first-year undergraduates. 

Paid internships in the UK, vacation placements, open days, and short introductory courses or ‘taster’ experiences are some of the ways in which employees are engaging with graduates. Click To Tweet

Together, the graduate employers featured in the survey offered over 13,000 paid internships and work experience placements in 2019. This is a modest increase in the number of work placements internship facts for 2018 show us.

COVID-19 and Internship Facts & Statistics

22. 56% of surveyed students are still searching for a job or internship amidst COVID-19.

(Ripple Match)

Being aware of the importance of internships for college students, more than half of students are still actively searching for a job or internship amidst the COVID-19 global pandemic. 

And that’s not all:

38% have a job or internship secured, and 6% are pausing their search completely. Additionally, 38% had secured a job or internship during or prior to the health crisis. Out of that 38%, only 6% accepted an offer during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

23. 78% of design students are currently searching for a job or internship, but only 16% of design students are currently accepting a job or internship.

(Ripple Match)

College students are trying their best to adapt to the current situation. Some more than others. 

Notably, the career a student is pursuing strongly influences where they are looking for a job or internship at the moment. 

Here’s the deal:

Students pursuing careers in Marketing/Communications, HR/Admin, and Design are most likely to be searching for a job right now, while students in Software Engineering, Finance, and Consulting are more likely to have a position secured. 

The importance of an internship for a career in design is pushing students to seek opportunities regardless of the current situation. 

And finally:

24. 83% of students say the biggest challenge of conducting a job search during COVID-19 is the difficulty to tell which companies are actively hiring.

(Ripple Match)

What is needed for an internship? And what are the biggest challenges of conducting a job search during the COVID-19 pandemic? 

83% of students state the biggest challenge of searching for a job at this time is knowing whether companies are hiring or not. Additionally, 74% cited unresponsiveness from companies as a challenge, while 72% agreed that the added stress of COVID-19 made the search particularly difficult.

Final Thoughts

The latest internship facts and statistics show that the number of available internship positions is increasing. 

Although the process of finding an internship placement or the right candidates may not be easy, companies are finding new ways to improve their strategies to attract the right candidates.  

So, whether you’re a 70-year-old retiree looking for a fresh challenge or an 18-year-old freshman trying to make your way in the world, you have a good chance of finding the most suitable companies for your personal and professional development. 

Sources:

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