In general, my responsibility during my internship is to learn. My internship was with Lessings Hospitality as the hospitality intern at The Iridium Jazz Club. As an intern I do not have a specific job with routine daily tasks, rather I shadow, assist, and learn from the managers. Some days this looks like reviewing booking contracts, organizing historical inventory, and providing hospitality to artists. On other days that looks like serving, hosting, and bartending. It has been a super dynamic role and I have learned a lot!
My greatest accomplishment so far has been building relationships with the managers and other servers. When I walk into work it's easy to feel at home and get right to work. I feel comfortable asking my managers if there is anything I can do and ask for help when I need it. In return, they feel like they can rely on me to get a job done when they ask. While I haven't been the head of any major projects, I can say I have positively contributed to the workplace culture.
Concretely, I have learned a lot about contracting, booking, bartending, and serving. However, abstractly I have learned how to build community, how to be more independent, and how to be a manager who leads. While the intent of an internship is to gain those concrete skills that will help you in your career, I think the abstract lessons and skills are equally important. We work in a people industry, so it's necessary to understand how people, especially those in your target market, operate.
What advice would you give?
My advice to future students is to focus more on building your network than on building up your own accolades. It is extremely important to work hard and build your experience, but having a variety of genuine connections can get you much farther than you could on your own. Create a LinkedIn profile yes, but talk to the people in your classes, become friends with your coworkers, ask your professors questions, go to the career fair! That way you have people to actually connect with on LinkedIn.