Internships are essential for growing your resume and gaining experience throughout your professional journey. Yet and still, not every internship leaves you feeling prepared and established; some leave much to be desired. And in the most extreme cases, there may be cause to check out early and spare yourself some time wasted.
Quitting your internship can be a hard decision to make, and shouldn't be done without careful consideration. Even when it's best to leave, you want to be sure you've covered all of your bases and exit without burning any bridges.
If your internship isn't going as well as you expected, and you think you may be reaching the tipping point, here are some steps you can take before handing in your notice:
Seek out a mentor
Mentors are great personal and professional resources to have, especially when making difficult decisions. If your aren't having the greatest internship experience, try seeking out an older or more experienced mentor who you can confide in about your concerns. Ask for advice, or what they would do in your shoes. They may be able to provide an alternative or means to turn your situation around.
Talk with your supervisor
Your internship supervisor is there to assist and guide you through your internship. If your experience isn't executing as you planned it would, try setting up a meeting and talking about your role with your supervisor. If you thought you'd be writing more or handling media relations, express that to your supervisor. There may be more of what you expect down the road. It's also a good time for your supervisor to recognize your drive and see how willing you are to do and learn more during your time with the organization.
Provide some solutions
If you know exactly which aspects of your internship are causing you to consider leaving, come up with some possible solutions to the issue. Present these to your boss and see if they'd be willing to let you steer the rest of your time in that direction. Some internship programs don't give interns certain responsibilities simply because they haven't thought of it yet. This is another chance to show your drive and commitment to your position.
If you feel that you've covered all of your basis and ultimately want to leave, be sure to do so as professionally as possible. Provide at least two weeks notice, and thank everyone for providing you the opportunity. Always maintain a healthy professional relationship, because you never know when you'll need them again.
Have you ever quit an internship? What steps did you take before deciding to quit? Share with us in the comments!