The workforce is crowded and competitive. So, how can college students stand out to employers before they even graduate?
Learn how externship programs are helping students lay solid foundations in their careers and gain essential work experience before they even graduate.
What is an externship?
An externship is an opportunity for a student to experience his or her career field first-hand by working alongside experienced professionals in real-world settings. Externships empower students to gain practical work experience by exposing them to the day-to-day responsibilities their desired position requires.
Externships typically occur at the end of a student's program of study and are completed during a fixed time period. Some students opt for a part-time externship, while others pursue a full-time program.
While no externship is exactly the same, most - if not all - externships deliver unrivaled benefits to students and their career preparation.
How Externships Benefit Students
Externships are arguably one of the most valuable aspects of any career training program. The benefits of an externship for college students include, but are not limited to:
- Working directly in a professional environment
- Assisting with duties and procedures
- Gaining in-demand skills
- Forming a strong work ethic
- Receiving real-time feedback from experienced professionals
- Growing a network by connecting with colleagues and managers
Ohio Business College’s Externship Program
What Real OBC Students Had to Say
Within their final quarters of study, OBC students complete externships with local businesses and organizations and work under the supervision of professionals in their field of study.
We caught up with five OBC graduates and asked them to discuss their externship experience and what they're up to now. Read what they had to say and discover how their OBC education and externship program set them up for success:
- Erica Friend, Medical Administrative Assistant Graduate
"I had an amazing externship site at Bonnie Stamatis office in Elyria, Ohio. They were so willing to help me learn new things I didn’t know before. If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t have been able to put my education to use. I’m a former Authorization Representative, where my job was to try to get insurance companies to approve different procedures. I’m currently at an amazing job called Quadax Inc. in Middleburg Heights. I’m still in training, but so far, the new job and staff are amazing."
- Joseph Chaplin, Business Administration with a Concentration in Accounting Graduate
"My externship was a little unique. I completed my externship at two different locations. I requested this because I wanted to experience what it was like to apply my skills in a small private business setting as well as a larger nonprofit organization. OBC was very accommodating to my request.
For the first site, I worked with a previous OBC graduate who was working as an office manager at a successful small, privately owned cleaning business called Service Master of Sandusky. I learned hands on how to apply the accounting and business administration skills that I learned at OBC from someone who had found success in their field after OBC.
My second site was the billing department for the Nord Center of Lorain County. The externship was exciting and really allowed me to sharpen my newly acquired business tools to get ready to enter the competitive job market.
I am working for United Consumer Financial Services out of Westlake, Ohio. I am a certified Loan Underwriter and Senior Loan Processing Liaison responsible for handling loan buying, loan processing, operations, and direct customer support for the new business and business growth sector of my company. I strongly believe that all of this would have not been possible had I not started my journey with OBC."
- Bart Hamrick, Medical Assisting Graduate
"My medical assistant externship was at the Cleveland Clinic and I was able to work in the cardiology department performing EKG’s, the ENT (ears, nose, and throat) department where I assisted the doctor with his procedures, and the pediatrics department was my favorite because the kids were so fun. I also learned rooming techniques and practiced my filing and scanning.
I am currently the Clinical Supervisor/Externship Coordinator at Comprehensive Pain Care and have been there for about 4.5 years. I work with four doctors and enjoy my work."
- Lindsey Becker, Legal Assistant Graduate
"My externship was with a law firm out of Lorain and it was the first time they had worked with OBC to get an extern. Adding to the pressure of being the first extern to represent OBC, one of the lawyers was also the Law Director of Lorain, making it that much more important that I showed the level of education I received. I was able to learn a lot of valuable information that I wouldn’t be able to learn in the classroom, and I was grateful to be able to have had that experience."
- Christina Norman Business Administration Graduate
"My externship was a great experience. I was introduced to real work experience without the pressure of actually being “on the job” because they knew I was there to learn. I had two different externships, and both offered me very different, excellent perspectives in the field of my study. It was one of the things that inspired me to go on with my education and obtain my bachelor’s degree in accounting. I am working at the Residence Inn Cleveland Downtown as the accounts payable clerk. I also perform human resource duties, as I am an assistant recruiter as well."
Let these experiences inspire you. You can achieve your professional goals. Let OBC help you start or advance your career today.