Economics Internships and Vacation Programs for Undergraduates
Applying and landing an internship in your chosen field is one of the best ways to landing an actual job in your future career, acting as a stepping-stone in a student’s early career. Internships allow students to use their skill and knowledge gained in the classroom and put it to practice in a more formal setting. They help develop your experience in economics by learning the essentials by experienced professionals.
Economics primarily focuses on microeconomics and macroeconomics. Microeconomics studies the basic elements in the economy, which include individual agents and markets, their interactions, and the results from interactions. Macroeconomics studies the economy as a whole and the issues that affect it, which includes unemployment of resources, inflation, economic growth, and the public policies that talk about the issues.
It is always a good idea to start looking for internships early and undergraduates are expected to start planning and applying for internships a year prior they plan to intern. By having an economics degree, you’ll have the qualifications and requirements needed to land you a job in a number of work departments and with an economics internship, the experience you gain will help prepare you for the right job.
To be a potential candidate of an economics internship is for a student to be undergoing a degree relevant to economics and acquire key skills that would be of use including:
- Ability to use MS Office tools (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
- Analytical and problem solving skills
- IT skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Ability to work well with others and independently
What to Expect
Economics internships teach you the practices and terminology of a workplace while developing your skills in critical thinking, problem solving, problem solving, and flexibility to apply economics to different disciplines. You’ll also develop skills to work on projects that will help improve your analytical and technical skills as well as the experience of working in an economic environment that surround:
- Financial modelling and planning
- Management reporting
- Investor partnerships etc.
A few areas of internships you may expect to be involved in include1:
- Economics (macroeconomics and microeconomics)
- Public governance and territorial development
- Corporate operative services (budget & finance, communications & PR, etc.)
- Tax policy and administration
- Development co-operation
- Employment, labour and social affairs
- Financial and enterprise affairs
Being qualified to work in various departments allows you to have an extensive list of industries you can intern in, and potentially land a job in and these may include the departments of2:
- Environmental management
- Foreign affairs or international development
- Government or politics
- Information technology
- Infrastructure and transport
- International finance, investment, insurance and trade
- Marketing and tourism
- Natural resource and agricultural economics
- Public health
- Teaching and education
In addition to the extensive list of employers, these are number of jobs an economics undergraduate can expect to pursue in for a future career, including:
- Mortgage loan officer
- Cost analyst
- Financial researcher etc.
Internships will help you decide whether a career in economics is the right choice for you. You’ll be able to experience what it’s like to work in a real life company atmosphere that would benefit you for your future career and it is likely that after completion of the internship, your employer could offer you a permanent job at the company.
1 Career Development & Consulting, Economics Internships, 2015
2 The University of Queensland, Career Opportunities and Internships, 2015