Strengths for an Internship

Strong interns often make strong employees, so show your best side.

Strong interns often make strong employees, so show your best side.

During a job interview, you can almost bet the employer will ask the question, "What are your strengths and weaknesses?" While it's common during the hiring process, the question can also pop up during an interview for an internship. As such, you'd better be prepared to talk about what makes you a strong candidate. While that might include a lot of different things, a few themes pop up no matter what industry you're in.

Responsibility

Interns often come right out of college or some other training program -- which often coincides with a lot of college partying and a spotty sense of responsibility. If you want to impress your potential internship employer, let her know you're responsible. Then demonstrate your responsibility by showing up on time and completing tasks as promised.

Commitment

The average intern will show up for the internship, but may cruise through the experience without making any waves. You can set yourself above the pack by demonstrating a high level of commitment to the company. Go above and beyond in every way you can; do plenty of research on your industry and the company before and during the internship. Do a top-notch job on any tasks to which you're assigned, and find ways to do more than what is expected of you.

Knowledge

You may just be starting out, but you've gone through a lot of schooling to get to where you are -- which means you should have a lot of knowledge about the industry in which you're working. Beyond academic materials, read trade magazines. Interact with people in your field on social sites and at networking events. All of this will show you've taken the steps necessary to stay current and knowledgeable in your field.

Humility

While it's important to show that you know what you're talking about, it's also important to demonstrate a level of humility. You've learned a lot in school, but the people already working in your field will likely know a lot more. Be a good listener and let your intern employers know you value the education you're getting from them. This also lends itself to being flexible -- another important trait. If you let your internship employers lead the way and listen and follow their advice, you'll show you're able to take direction and roll with the punches.

 

About the Author

Nicole Vulcan has been a journalist since 1997, covering parenting and fitness for The Oregonian, careers for CareerAddict, and travel, gardening and fitness for Black Hills Woman and other publications. Vulcan holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from the University of Minnesota. She's also a lifelong athlete and is pursuing certification as a personal trainer.

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