Internship is a catalyst. They Transform practice. Especially when they are about people. They can be a sea change in the personality of the counselor with how they perceive internship. Internships are boring. They are full of menial work. Repetitive and mundane. This is past. These are times of change. So is the structure of internships is changing. Now they are learning experience. Obviously depending on where you do it. At an uninteresting organization, it can be a struggle.
See that your internship is a blend of practice and learning. very less menial work. Internships have to be a learning experience. Most of the time though people are hustling to complete the internship. There has to be a practical aspect of the internship. How we are going to make the best out of the resources that are available, with the office we are working in. So let’s divide this into three different parts Pre, during, and post-internship.
It is time to hunt. Use the jungle safari strategy. A hunter waits. Never ever he enters the jungle and starts firing bullets. Before you hunt for the internship make sure what are the criteria. The criteria your college or a university has drafted. Find out if the office or the institute our organization that you are going to work with Caterers the same. Does it give all the certifications that are needed? Watch out for your interests.
Also, look out what is your area of expertise for the specialization that you are looking to pursue. Even if it looks small commitment of 1-3 months. Don’t waste your time. Find out if pre-practicum and Practicum are conducted. Pre practicum at the beginning of the internship is necessary. What type of training does the institute gives you? Also, look out what therapy they practice.
Find and figure out what is your favorite therapy. your style of therapy and whether if this organization matches your type of therapy.
Find out the skill sets of the organization. Also if your skill sets and interests match with the organization.
they techno-savvy? Are they going to help you create your brand or build your practice? Know the commercials. whether the internship is Probono. If there are massive trainings conducted the there can be investment involved. Find out if there are any investments. Also, ask them about the working hours. what will be the mini-project that you will be doing? Outcome achieved with the internship that you are doing with this organization. Find out if you want to work with an organization that works with schools or corporates. your area of specialization must be clear in your mind. Expertise if you want to do it in a clinical background find out if they have an in-house psychiatrist. If you plan to specialize in Evidence-based Life coaching or particular counseling. Take this test below to know your therapy style. It is fun.
During the internship
Make sure that you follow all the given instructions by the Institute. Be proactive about your learning. Discuss your learning in Forum or groups if this institute or organization Provides. Group learning on forums is the backbone of the process. Most Learning organizations usually have forums. where all the people in the group interact and talk or discuss the process. What mini projects or activities they are doing in the organization. Learn the technology that the organization uses. Work as if you plan to start your own practice which you do. Most of the organizations use Trello or a certain type of to-do list or slack to manage their teams. Try and understand the software to learn the software is that the organization is using. Also, look out for different types of tests or online ties they are doing currently. Understand what are the different ways of assessments that the organization conducts.
Even if you don’t plan to start your office I would suggest that you look at All the aspects of the office. As if you are going to start your own venture or your own practice immediately after the internship. It is always a good idea to go through the internship as if you’re going to start your own office. so that you learn them through and through. Don’t assume things. Ask whatever you think is not appropriate or inappropriate. Suggest changes and feedback. Let the organization also learn from you. If the organization is too rigid or too stable. An organization has to be a learning organization. They have to be as flexible as possible when it comes to managing teams.
At the end of doing the internship make sure that you have completed all the mini-projects.
You have taken in the office you have done all the seminars workshops that were given to you. or you have also come up with white papers that were discussed with the organization in advance.
organizations also have a personal development plan for the people. In advance make sure that your organization offers a personal development plan. so that you know what will be your next 2-3 months. It gives perspective. About self and the process of learning. when you are actually Start an internship with an organization. Organizations are usually hassled with a lot of demand at the end of the internship.
As a vigilant person, start early. From the beginning start collecting documents, worksheets, tests, etc. Design the compilation of your internship report. It will help you at the end of the process. You will not be hassled at the last moment. Keep a file. A set or a folder on your computer. Curate all the documents that you might need to compile at the end. As soon as any activity or any process is done you find that it is very important, file it. A test that you take up the client or the transcriptions that you have heard. Transcriptions of Psychologist talking to the client.
Compile them and use them as it is very helpful. These can be case studies at the end of your report.
Also, make reports of all the activities that you do along with organizations. Like taking seminars, webinars at different types of schools or counseling. Activity that you do with different corporations or offices. As you are already compiling all the things that you need by the end of the internship it is always better to take the complete report parallelly. Then you can compile a final report and then take a signature on the Incharge.
Make sure that you make a branding page of your own. So that people can have a look at your profile. Activities that you have already done in the Internship you can add that in your profile. By taking permission from the organization you can build your practice. For example, you have worked along with this organization in a school or a hospital you can put the same on your profile. So that people can have an idea about what exactly you are working in.
You can also work with the organization as a brand or help them grow if you want to continue. Get ready for your viva to find, out figure out, what are the usual questions. Be prepared in advance about all the different possible questions that are asked. Always keep an extra copy of all your documents in the cloud or a Dropbox. Building your profile is a very important aspect of an internship in psychology. Ensure the organization helps you with that in advance.