Most of us have a job during school. Some people have two or three jobs on top of a full course load.
As we get further in our education, many may venture into getting an internship.
At most schools, an internship can be counted for class credit hours.
This is nice for some students who want the experience while getting class credit for their 400 level classes.
It’s nice until you have a 15-credit hour class load, a job or two, and are working 20+ hours at your internship. Depending on the department, 20 to 30 hours may be required. For example, the Political Science department requires 20 hours.
The idea is that you aren’t learning as much at an internship, so you’re forced to be there more often. This is like the expectation for each class because you spend three to four hours out of class for the subject.
If you are taking 15 credit hours, minus the internship, that is roughly 12 hours of work outside of class for each subject. Shouldn’t that mean that the internship should take around the same amount of time?
Class is only roughly three hours a week, and in class you cannot, or aren’t supposed to, work on other assignments. However, the during the hours spent completing homework outside of class, you can essentially do whatever you want.
In an internship, those 20 hours are spent doing whatever is required at that internship. You don’t get time to sit on your phone and look at Instagram or take a 30-minute nap.
I work at a legal office and the entire time I am working on cases or helping clients. I don’t have time to relax like I do when I am taking a class.
Of course, internships don’t have homework or papers, but I think I am learning more from that internship than I am in a class. I am getting the hands-on experience I need to do well in my future career.
Combining the hours for classes and an internship, it is about 68 hours a week. This doesn’t even include a job, which many students need to attend school and work this 20-hour internship.
It is not feasible for students to have an 88-hour work week when the student works 20 hours a week. It is the same as having two full time jobs, and then some.
By doing this, a student has no time for their well-being. They don’t have time for any sort of social life, to work out for their health, or to have time for hobbies.
There are 168 hours in a week. Subtract 88 from that and you now have 80 hours left. Subtract eight hours of sleep, seven times a week, and you are now left with 24 hours. One day to take care of yourself.
The hours are lenient. Students work more than 20 hours a week, work at their internships for maybe more than 20 hours a week and may need more than eight hours of sleep.
Other schools, like Indiana University and Kent State, only require 10-12 hours for an internship per week.
This amount of time would allow students a better opportunity to take care of themselves and not be swallowed by the ever-flowing requirements and needs that academia involves.
An internship is a wonderful opportunity to figure out your interests and should be something to get excited about, but not something you dread to go to every week.