Whether you’ve already spent time in an internship, or are thinking about applying for one, it’s important to realize just how beneficial a nursing internship can be. There’s nothing more valuable than experience and knowledge, and a nursing internship can provide both. Although many get discouraged at the thought of working for free, it’s important to remember that nursing internships are a valuable experience that can’t be gained anywhere else.
In school, you probably won’t witness a patient’s progression of care, while during an internship, you’re more likely to see exactly how a patient receives care and just how the medical facility works together to provide the best possible care. Working alongside experienced medical professionals will always be well worth the internship.
Benefits of a Nursing Internship
Collaborate with Professionals in Your Field
There are no better teachers than those who’ve been in the trenches before you. By this, we mean the medical professionals have experienced, first-hand, a wide variety of issues and problems that may arise while on the job. They are the best teachers. They have been there, done that. So, they know exactly how to help teach you and answer all of your questions because they have experienced it, first hand, in the past.
Working with a broad healthcare team will also allow you to understand the roles and responsibility of all professionals. Make sure to ask questions and pay attention the relationships between each member of the team.
You Can Gain a Mentor
A nursing internship is also a great way to find a mentor to lead you through your early nursing career. Most nurses will gladly become a mentor so you can learn the ropes and see how to create a safe environment for both patients and nurses.
This mentor could also become a great reference in the future if you’re on the job hunt. Make sure to maintain a good relationship with the nurses and other medical professionals that you interact with on a daily basis. These relationships can become very important down the line. Not to mention, by maintaining good relationships and interacting with as many medical professionals as possible you will be able to increase your network which can benefit you greatly as you seek jobs, advice, or assistance throughout your career.
You Will Gain Confidence
Internships can also help you gain confidence in a clinical setting. A nursing internship is a learning experience, so it’s okay if you ask questions or make mistakes. Everyone has to start somewhere, so don’t fret or feel anxious if you don’t master every skill right away.
Practicing on real patients will also increase your confidence and familiarity within the medical field. This experience will become vital when you eventually look for a full-time position. There’s a lot of things that you can’t learn in the lab, so make sure you’re willing to try anything and learn new skills.
It Could Result In a Future Job
A nursing internship will, at the very least, allow you to familiarize yourself with a professional environment and it could even lead to a future job. Many facilities will use the internship pool to choose prospective employees. So, make sure to make as many connections as you can and leave a (positive) lasting impression on your coworkers.
Many will offer to have you work part-time at the facility while you go through school. Others might even choose to hire you on the spot. If they do not have openings, they might put in a good word at another practice, so make sure to get a letter of recommendation and references from your time there. Either way, make sure that you strive to be the best intern and future nurse that you can be.
What other reasons are nursing internships important?