The Difference Between Internship and Attachment


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Program Overview

Internship and Attachment are two different terms yet they are often mistaken, one for the other. What they do have in common for sure is that they have a great role to play in the shaping of your career.

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What is Internship?

It can be defined as a supervised short-term working experience which gives you hands-on experience in your company or field of interest. Usually, it is offered by companies as a program for students or people with very little to no experience at all in the chosen profession or an entry level program for students. In most cases, it is done at free will by interested parties. The aim is to gain working experience. It offers meaningful practical work related to your chosen field of study.

Internship provides students with career development and career exploration and the ability to learn new skills. It normally consists of a full time or part time work schedule which includes less than 25% administrative or clerical duties. Internship orients the student to the organisation, the organisational culture and proposed work assignments. It also gives regular feedback to the student intern. According to company policy, the internship can be paid, partially paid or unpaid and the duration may vary.

What are the two types of internships?

The two main types of internship locations are virtual and in-person. In-person internships are still the most common you’ll see, but there are more opportunities available now for internships you can complete from home.

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What is Attachment

Often referred to as Industrial Attachment, the term refers to a short term examinable work experience that some universities and colleges require students to take part in as part of the coursework necessary for the student to graduate. This program is usually undertaken in the third or fourth year of study. It gives students the opportunity to practice the theories learnt in the classroom.

It is inclusive of the application of skills learned by the student in an organization related to the students’ academic field.  Attachment is meant to challenge the student to examine the values of the organisation involved in the experience, and to assess the student’s education as it relates to the Attachment.

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Difference Between Attachment and Internship

Must be a studentAvailable also to recent graduates seeking work experience
Can be paid or unpaidUsually unpaid
Can be done voluntarily or at free willSchool requirement
Takes a maximum of one yearTakes 3 months to 1 year
Under company supervisionSupervised by program supervisor and university supervisor

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One thing the above have in common is benefits. These are:

  • Exposure to hands on work experiences
  • Learning from established professionals in the career field
  • Providing a job  search edge to participants
  • Helps establish industry network and contacts
  • Helps in contributing to the local industry

Here is something you may find useful: INTERNSHIPS

What are 2 things you should do while you intern?

Here are 19 different tasks for interns:

  • Do research for a new project. …
  • Learn more about competitors. …
  • Figure out better systems. …
  • Create a presentation. …
  • Keep an organized workspace. …
  • Complete additional training. …
  • Sit in on client meetings. …
  • Help with brainstorming sessions.

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