What Are the Different Types of Project Management Internships?

M. Kayo

Project management internships typically involve a management intern who supports the project manager in every aspect of any type of project and is either paid, unpaid, or a volunteer. Some paid and unpaid project management internships are available to undergraduates at various colleges and universities. Certain project management internships may also require some training, such as an associate's or bachelor's degree, typically with a concentration in business or some other area of study related to a specific field or business. These internships may be associated with just about any type of work or profession. Interns may report to an executive or manager placed high within a corporation or organization.

The purpose of any internship is to gain more experience, develop additional marketable skills, and become more valuable to a current employer or future employers.
The purpose of any internship is to gain more experience, develop additional marketable skills, and become more valuable to a current employer or future employers.

The best project management internships are programs that offer educational experience, working with an experienced professional, and getting paid to do it. These type of paid internships are not that hard to find if one knows where to look. Performing an online search for project management internships on one of the many websites that list these internships is a good place to start. Refine the search to find paid internships within the field of expertise or profession desired.

The best project management internships offer academic credit and a salary.
The best project management internships offer academic credit and a salary.

The trade-off for an unpaid project management internship is the valuable work experience gained by working with professionals in a particular area or profession. These unpaid project management internships should be carefully considered along with the paid internships. Many times the experience gained and knowledge acquired are far more valuable than any amount of compensation. The purpose of any internship is to gain more experience, develop additional marketable skills, and become more valuable to a current employer or future employers. The experience and knowledge gained from an unpaid internship may provide opportunity for advancement and salary increases for many years to come.

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Similar to the unpaid internship, offering to do volunteer work with a specific corporation or organization can also provide experience now and open up opportunities within the volunteer organization or other corporations. Volunteers have the advantage of being on the inside and are likely to be some of the first to hear of possible future employment or other paid positions within an organization. Volunteering also sends a message to any future employer of a willingness to give time and effort freely and willingly. As a bonus, volunteer work can pay off in personal satisfaction and warm feeling dividends.

One last type of project management internship opportunity lies within the higher education system in colleges, universities, and even corporations around the world. Undergraduate students typically work for a specific division or area of an organization to create new projects or on projects already in development. The best part of these internships are the opportunities for networking both inside and outside the organization. These valuable connections may prove to be quite useful in any future career advancement or opportunities for employment. Most of these type of undergraduate internships are full-time paid positions.

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