10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

Fusing passion and profession isn’t always easy to come by, but I’m thankful I found it during my internship at Compassion last summer.

I grew in my professional development, my capacity to be stretched outside my comfort zone, and my relationship with God – not too shabby for a 10-week internship, am I right?

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

Compassion interns, summer 2017

Compassion interns come from all across the globe (representing 17 states and four countries in my summer) with unique gifts and talents. No two interns come from the same background or have the same story. However, we all experienced some commonalities, and I’d like to give you a glance as to what that looked like for us.

If you’re thinking about interning at Compassion, I’d definitely encourage you to apply. Take a gander at these 10 things you can expect of an internship at Compassion and you’ll see why…

1. Self-awareness

If you don’t know your gifts and talents before entering your internship at Compassion, you definitely will by the time you leave. Through workshops and self-assessments (like StrengthsFinders), I gained a ton of valuable insight on my unique passions, skills and the “why” behind it all.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

2. Coffee

Compassion focuses on the three C’s: Christ, Children and Church. But if there was a fourth one, I’m convinced it would be Coffee. Every breakroom is locked and loaded with a machine that dispenses free coffee to make those Monday mornings just a tad bit easier. We took advantage of our intern title by setting up meet-and-greets with our co-workers, because, let’s be honest – it usually involved coffee of some sort.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

3. Meaningful Work

Interns here don’t fill coffee orders and make copies – they get stuff done! Knowing my work was making a difference motivated me to be extremely committed to my tasks each and every day. We were not merely seen as your “stereotypical college interns,” but as capable, educated individuals who create apps, develop marketing plans, organize events and make an overall impact.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

4. Free Weekends

Transitioning from a class schedule to Monday through Friday 8-5 takes some getting used to. But it leaves weeknights, Saturdays and Sundays completely open. And the best part is … no homework! What to do with all this freedom in Colorado? I filled most of my weekends with hiking, white-water rafting and camping trips to national parks – the options are endless! (In case you didn’t know, Colorado is BEAUTIFUL.)

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

5. Prayer

It would be incredibly difficult to go a day here without praying with co-workers – and that my friends, is something to be thankful for. Whether it’s before lunch, interviews or meetings, you can be sure prayer is a huge part of this community! Receiving prayer from others helped give clarity during that season, and it also brought hope and encouragement into my everyday life.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

6. Post-internship Encouragement

“What are your plans for after the internship ends?” is usually an overwhelming and quite frankly, annoying question. But we knew people genuinely cared about what was in store for our futures. People encouraged us by sharing their own stories and reminding us that God has a plan … even when we don’t.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

7. Free Food

Turning down free food would simply be financially irresponsible, so interns ought to be on the lookout for the free food hookups. You will likely know the best candy dish in the office and where the snack cart is at all times within days of beginning your internship here. Maybe you’ll even be in a group text with other interns about where to find every single office party leftover – not like I know from experience or anything…

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

8. Worship

My eyes (and ears) were certainly opened on how to worship well as I worked. There are weekly chapel and prayer groups, occasional worship sessions and get this – there’s even worship music in the bathroom! It may sound silly, but filling my days with worship definitely helped my motivation, integrity and peace increase – both in and out of the workplace.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

9. Casual Dress Code

Casual dress code is pretty much the dream for any young adult. Compassion is definitely a professional environment, but it’s also pretty laid back when it comes to attire. Maybe ditch the Chacos and shorts from summer camp, but feel free to wear jeans any day of the week!

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

10. Mentorship

Professional and spiritual wisdom is bursting out of the seams here – and people want to share that with you! We took advantage of gaining knowledge and advice from our highly talented and experienced co-workers by grabbing coffee (of course) and asking LOTS of questions.

10 Things to Expect of an Internship at Compassion

Long story short, Compassion interns are truly a grateful bunch. We loved serving this organization and its mission …  and had a whole lot of fun while doing it!

I can confidently say that I wouldn’t have wanted to intern anywhere else. I’m a big fan of what’s going down here and I hope you are too! Even if you’re not as big a fan of coffee as some of us are, you should probably still apply …

Check out how to apply for an internship at Compassion today!

1 Comment |Add a comment

  1. Rachel Gillespie December 8, 2017

    Hi Katie!

    Thanks so much for sharing your authentic (and hilarious!) thoughts. I am applying to be an intern in the summer of 2018, and this post is a fantastic snapshot into the program!

    – Rachel Gillespie

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