Externships and internships are two fantastic opportunities to gain real-world, on-the-job exposure while still enhancing your resumé or online profile. And, although the two opportunities are close, they are not identical. But don't worry, chance-seekers! t his article has been written to fill you in on all the information so you can decide which path to take based on your professional objectives. We are here to help you figure out which path is right for you, as well as how to find an internship or externship that aligns with your career goals. But before you get to choose, first let’s explain the two opportunities.

1. Internship

What Is an Internship?

Internships, as the most popular temporary on-the-job experience for students and trainees. They are ideal for those seeking a more in-depth, first-hand look at a particular industry. Like externships, they place aspiring professionals in real-world settings, giving them a taste of what life is like in a particular industry. Internships for college students, unlike externships, typically offer a nominal stipend or an hourly salary. Internship programs often last a few months, with several students finishing them during the semester or during the summer.

Types of Internships

Internships are available in a wide range of fields and situations. An internship may be compensated, uncompensated, or partly compensated (in the form of a stipend).

Internships may be part-time or full-time, and they are generally flexible around the schedules of students. An internship usually lasts one to four months, but it may be shorter or longer depending on the institution. Interning may also be described as work shadowing.

a.Paid internships

Internships for work experience are most common in the second or third year of education.

This style of internship is designed to broaden an intern's experience of both their school studies and their work environment. The intern is supposed to bring school-related ideas and skills to the business.

Medicine, architecture, research, engineering, law, business (especially accounting and finance), technology, and advertisement are all examples of technical fields where they are used.

b.Unpaid internships

They mostly come from non-profit organizations and think tanks that have unpaid or volunteer jobs. Under the Minimum Wage Act, state law and regulatory authorities have the right to implement restrictions on unpaid internship programs.

To be recognized as an unpaid internship, a program must fulfill certain requirements.

c.Partially-paid internships

When students are paid in the form of "an allowance", it is known as a stipend. 

Stipends are usually a set sum of money that is distributed on a daily basis. Interns that are paying with stipends are usually compensated according to a fixed schedule provided by the company.


Many large companies, especially investment banks, provide "insights" services that last anywhere from a day to a week and can be completed in person or online.

e.Research and/or dissertation

Students in their final year of school are the ones who do this the most. The student works for a specific business during this kind of internship. The business may have an area that they believe they should develop, or the student can choose a subject within the company. The findings of the analysis review will be written up in a journal and often presented.

f.Virtual Internship

Another kind of internship is becoming incredibly popular. This one is when an intern works from home and is not physically present at the workplace. Another kind of internship that is becoming increasingly common.

This one is when an intern works from home and is not physically present at the workplace.

It gives people the opportunity to achieve work experience without having to be physically involved in an office. Online interaction, such as phone, email, and web services, is used to carry out the internship. Virtual interns have the freedom to work at their own pace in most cases.

The Benefits of Internships

  • Students who complete internships are more likely to find full-time jobs after graduation
  • They might pay. In general, only half of all internships are paid, and unpaid internships are becoming less common. (In 2019, 60.8 percent of interns were paid, the mean hourly wage for a paid intern with a bachelor’s degree was $19.05) 
  • You may be able to get college credit with them. Many postsecondary and training programs enable students to participate in an internship, which will assist you in meeting the criteria.
  • They are more comprehensive than externships, meaning you can learn a lot more and gain even more advantages, ensuring a seamless transition into the field.
  • They might even lead to a work opportunity. When you work with a company for several months, you have the opportunity to demonstrate your skills and network with experienced experts, which may lead to a career down the line.
  • It is possible that they will be used to fulfill preparation requirements. Your internship may count against the clinical or training hours that your program requires.

How to get an internship?

It is time to see what is available now that you have narrowed down which internships would be a good fit.

You can browse for internship titles you are interested in on Job Sites and filter results by area, volume, industry, company reviews, and more. 

You can also approach companies directly by writing a letter of interest in the hopes that they can contact you as a position becomes available or maybe build one for you. It is a longer shot than submitting directly, but if you do not try, you will never know.

2. Externship

What is an Externship?

The most basic concept of an externship is a short-term job training program with learning experiences that can last anywhere from one day to six weeks. They offer interested students and trainees an insight into the real-world workplace by allowing them to shadow an employee, observe a Jobsite, or volunteer for a short period of time.

Externships are generally unpaid and do not offer college credit, but they may be required for the program. Externships are often completed during school holidays, such as summer, winter break, or spring break. Externships can be thought of as samples or "day-in-the-life" activities that allow you to obtain first-hand knowledge in your chosen field.

Types of Externships

Sectors of Government and Public Interest

Unlike internships, legal externships may be used for law school credit.

Externships have been completed in a variety of settings, including county, district, state, and federal legislative and executive offices.

Externship credits from the government and the public interest sector can be used to meet any of the requirements for the Public Interest Law certification program.

The Benefits of Externships

Externships sound interesting, don't they? Who does not like to spend the day spotting a busy emergency department doctor or working in a frantic newsroom? You will be able to properly visualize yourself in that role by stepping out of the school and into a real working world, while still soaking up important bits of career-focused information. Here is another great reason to work as an extern.

  • They are flexible and need little time or money, so you can continue to concentrate on your studies and other responsibilities.
  • They convey discipline and demonstrate the non-academic side of things by giving you hands-on experience in workshops, communication, and day-to-day challenges.
  • They are short-term, so they are not a big investment, and you can do a few of them through the period of your education.
  • They assist you with networking with others in your chosen career path which can contribute to future employment openings, internships, and other opportunities.

How do I get an externship?

Externships can be found by networking and making contacts with teachers, families, and colleagues, among other people.

Attending expositions or career showcases where you can be exposed to different organizations, businesspeople, and industry experts is a valuable way to create new contacts within the industry of interest.

Networking is always underrated, so take advantage of it to secure the next externship.

3. Internship vs externship:

What is the difference between the two? This is an often posed topic. The short response is...not a lot.

Externships vary from internships in that they are normally unpaid and do not have school credit. Despite the fact that the students are working directly in the office, they are just shadowing the professional or community of practitioners, rather than getting jobs allocated and tasks allocated as with an internship. When deciding the distinction between an externship and an internship, bear in mind that externships are generally used to pursue interests and curiosities, while internships function as a shift from college to working life.

The responsibilities

An internship can include:

  • Important, project-based activities enable the intern to observe the organization's primary business operations.
  • Participating in staff meetings
  • Making connections and networking with colleagues and/or clients

An externship can include:

  • Trying the company's services
  • Interviewing people for information
  • Observing and networking with industry experts

The value

An internship allows 

  • Hands-on experience in the chosen career field
  • To apply what students have learned in college.
  • Make professional contacts and expand their network
  • Increase the value of their resume

An externship allows:

  • Explore a work environment and spend a week on the job.
  • Via consultations with practitioners with common backgrounds, students can learn how to apply their academic major.
  • Make professional contacts and expand their network
  • Increase the value of their resume

Which one to choose

Internships and externships are both very beneficial to students and trainees.

The best option is to take advantage of any chance to obtain real-world experience in the industry. Consider it a sneak peek at the future! However, timing is crucial.

To ensure that you do not waste too much time in the wrong sector, try externing early in your education and then interning later.

At last, both externships and internships are valuable pre-career options for students and future professionals, and they are strongly recommended. Students who compete in several internships and/or externships while in college have a much greater chance of seeking jobs or enrolling in graduate school within six months of graduation.

The key is careful time control in order to decide which choice is the right match for the situation at hand.