Coffee runs and paper pushing may be common stigmas for interns, but that’s not the case for students at Northern Oklahoma College who get to engage in real world, work related business scenarios thanks to partnerships with local businesses.
Three Northern students were chosen to take part in the day-to-day challenges of working adults: Christy Hooley, mass communications; Hannah Forman, mass communications; Blake Hoemann, criminal justice.
Hooley, who works for Vype magazine, schedules and shoots pictures for local business and for the Enid smiles page also through Vype.
“When you are an intern you are learning so many things that coincide with your class work and that helps students see what their career would be like in that field. It also helps teach students time management and how to handle high pressure situations,” Hooley said.
Scott Haywood, NOC language arts instructor, highly recommends an internship experience before graduation.
“Internships are a safe environment that exposes students to the workaday world. They learn the responsibilities associated with employment, are giving more leeway and more of a chance to make mistakes. I believe internships offer students a learning experience that cannot be replaced in the classroom,” Haywood said.
Some of those learning experiences, however, come with slow-paced moments.
You can’t seem to find a donut shop without a cop in it. Hoemann, an intern at the Tonkawa Police Department, is realizing there are some boring times to being a cop. Even criminals have to sleep.
“I work as a part-time dispatcher. I learn what they do every day and I clean up the dog pound. I have learned that the public doesn’t care much for the police. They do not get much respect. It is totally different than I was expecting,” Hoemann said.
Gerald Konkler, criminal justice instructor, said police work isn’t everything you see on TV.
“Students need to realize that sometimes the occupation they think they want to be in is not what they think it is. It’s just not like the movies and TV. Internships give a more realistic view of the occupation before they’re fully committed,” Konkler said.
Forman is an intern for college recruiting on campus. She has quickly learned not to be shy when it comes to communicating.
“I have had to become more comfortable talking to new people and have improved on my people skills,” Forman said.
Whether the internship is what you expect or maybe find out that career field really isn’t for you, an internship is a great way to get your feet wet.
To find out more on internship requirements or what businesses are accepting interns, visit www.noc.edu/internships or call Dr. Rae Ann Kruse at 580.628.6341.
Article by Jennifer Smith