So, you just had a killer internship over the summer. Now what? It can be hard going back to school and focusing on biology labs and psych papers after an amazing professional experience. I recently experienced a phenomenon that I have named the “post-internship slump.” Over the summer, I was able to intern at a magazine in New York City. I learned so much and got actual, professional writing experience. I didn’t want it to end, but when August rolled around I had to say goodbye to my editorial life and come back to school.
For the first couple of weeks back, I was feeling frustrated and a little bored. Instead of going to events and interviewing actors and new faces in fashion, I was back to writing reflection papers and studying for exams. This is when I realized that I was stuck in a post-internship slump. If you are experiencing some or all of these symptoms, you may have the slump. Don’t panic: the good news is that you’re not alone. Here are some steps to get you over this slump and ready for the next opportunity that comes your way.
reflect on your experiences
It’s helpful to think about your internship as a stepping stone for what’s next. Write down the most notable and rewarding things you did as well as some of the things you wish you could’ve changed. Go back to this list for guidance when looking for your next job or internship.
Now that we have reflected, let’s shift our focus to something else. Obviously, schoolwork is a priority and should get a fair amount of attention, but there is plenty you can do to re-immerse yourself in campus life. Plan out road trips with your friends, find new coffee shops in your area, or just have a movie night with your roommates. Get back into the swing of things.
do what you love
If you loved your internship and you know exactly what you want to do after you graduate, then do it right now. If it’s photography, work on building your portfolio and find organizations on campus that need photographers. If it’s writing, join the school magazine or newspaper. Start a blog. Stay up-to-date with whatever is going on in your desired industry and keep looking for new opportunities.
remember how great college is
This step was the most important for me. It took me a few weeks in the beginning of the year to remember that college is a blast. It is unlike any other time in your life. So go get brunch with your friends and cherish the time you have before tax forms, water bills, mortgages, and other horrible adult stuff becomes your priority.
Together we can beat this slump. Share with us all of the cool stuff you are doing on campus this year in the comments below!
Featured photo by Amber Sudra.