Thursday, August 6, 2009

summer could have been more restful

What can you expect from a summer internship? After working for the past nine weeks, I'd say a either lot or a little, depending on how you look at it.

For me, it's been a tedious tenure at Washington Post Digital — editing photos, writing photo captions, and attempting construct massive databases that, frankly, I doubt will be implemented. In short, the work wasn't too rewarding. And all for no pay; my validation is a inconspicuous byline that even I overlook most of the time. Such is the life of an intern, and after a particularly trying day, after a particularly trying week, it's easy to feel taken advantage of.

On the other hand, maybe things aren't that bad. After all, internships are always temporary, and when I think back on how I could have spent my summer, to live and work in Washington D.C. definitely trumps the alternatives. I can't say I've learned much from a technical or journalistic outlook; the things I've picked up fall more under the "real-world-experience" category, re: full-time job, managing bosses, taking care of myself (i.e. not partying until 3 a.m. the night before work ... again ... ). The program I took here, The Washington Center, provided a lot of cool events and experiences, so I don't regret my time here. Things have just been too hectic.

What I find most frustrating in every internship has nothing to do with the internship itself, but rather the pairing of a work and school schedule. The two never overlap cohesively, and neither boss nor professor seems to understand (or care) I have more going on with my life. Especially while I'm sitting at work, I'm always thinking of school work that needs doing, and vice versa. Its a classic scenario of work during the day, school at night and sleep in between — though never enough.

If this is supposed to build character and ambition, I expect to be supernaturally motivated and interesting when I graduate. Right now, I'm just tired.

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