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Also consider that internships for credit may be available. It is important to weigh the relative value of internships. What are they offering you? Are they willing to help you to get hands-on experience? Does it get you into the door in a competitive industry? Are you actually learning, or are you mainly running to pick up someone's dry cleaning (you already know how to do that, right?). Is there any pay? Does the company have a policy of hiring qualified interns later? Be careful to distinguish between real opportunities and shallow promises. Does the internship leave you with anything tangible, such as a finished project that you could show in a portfolio? Be certain to check that you meet the requirements of your school without assuming that the employer will do it for you.

Independent Study

Consider taking an independent study class. While some people assume this will be easy, it is not necessarily the case. It could end up being a lot more work, but it also may be more rewarding. This sort of close interaction with professors can lead to department jobs and good letters of recommendation for graduate schools and jobs.

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