Internship for High School Credit starts out by discussing what an internship is and how it evolved from the apprenticeship model of the Middle Ages. Back in those days, young people would learn their skills and craft mostly from hands-on experience. They would learn the ways of the trade and practice to improve their skills over time by working with a master or expert in the field. When they were finally on their own, they already knew what was expected of them and what the day to day requirements of the job would be.
But over time, that concept has slipped away. These days, students go through the basic 12 years of school and are expected to know what they want to be when they grow up without having ever actually stepped foot in a place of business in their chosen career. They then spend thousands of dollars to attend four years of college and still may not know what it is like to actually do that job every day.
They graduate and they get their first job. And sadly, many young people are shocked and dismayed after just a few years in their field. "Wait, what? I have to do that in this job? That isn't what I thought I signed up for!" They are discouraged to learn that their career isn't all that they dreamed of and that it really wasn't what they were expecting. At this point, they have two choices - keep on plugging away at a career that isn't a good fit for them or cut their losses and start over with a new career.
The idea of an internship is a great way for young students to gain more experience in the career path they want to pursue. They learn the ins and outs of the day-to-day job responsibilities of the field BEFORE they invest thousands of dollars and years of their life to it. They are better able to focus their college degree on the skills they really need to learn because they know where they are heading. Plus, colleges are delighted to see students' applications that show they have some experience in their field because the colleges know that those students already know that this is what they want to do and are much less likely to drop out of school. Not only are these all great reasons for pursuing an internship in high school, but also if the student
So let's talk a little about Apologia's book, Internship for High School Credit. The book is intended for the student to read and use on their own. However, there is a section just for parents and it would certainly be most helpful for the student if the parent read the book and was able to discuss the ideas and concepts to help guide their student along the way.
After discussing the benefits of an internship, the book helps the student think through companies that they might be able to contact for an internship, how to write a resume and a letter of introduction, and how to interview for the position. For parents, there is also good information about how to document the internship on the student's transcript including course title, number of credits, and grades.
For the most part, the rest of the book is worksheets for the student to complete. There are worksheets for semester goals then weekly worksheets to be completed during the internship. These weekly worksheets help the student track days and hours worked but also include questions and activities for the student. I really love these questions and activities because they challenge the student to learn more. They have the student research specific element that may involve asking questions of their internship mentor or looking up information on their own. They weekly activities include things like learning about the job titles for the people at the business, paying close attention to work attire, thinking big picture about the job they do, career specific language and technology, thinking about how the student's strengths and interests fit with what they are doing in this internship, researching companies in the field that they might could later work for, and so much more.