For the last four months I have been interning for a studio close to where I attended college (and quite recently, graduated from). Since I’ve been here, most days have involved sitting around and doing grunt work like getting groceries and cleaning studios with scattered sit-ins on sessions, and from what I understand that is just normal intern stuff. The only problem I have is that through all this time, none of that has changed. I have gained little to no knowledge about the field that I want to go into. I have received no thanks for my efforts, despite my attempts to be a useful and available intern. I have spent so many hours sitting around and gaining nothing, hoping that all of this would lead me closer to a career that I have sought after for five years…and tomorrow I’m going to tell them I’m finished.
I have thought about this action so many times, weighing the options in my head over and over. I think about what I could have done better during my time here, and how I could have progressed further with the time that I have taken out to be here. Despite all of that, I realize that there is only so much I can do before it becomes clear that it’s not just my efforts that make this internship worth being in. There have been so many days where my offers to help have been for nothing, resulting in me sitting at the front desk and unlocking the door for people needing to come in for the sessions. There are only so many days where one asking if there is anything they can do to help, only to receive the response “nope, we’re all fine here” before you feel like your presence there is not needed.
I tried to tell them today, only to be told that I’ve been acting lazy and haven’t had initiative. My having a laptop in on a session last week apparently equated to that (it was, to my knowledge, the one time I’ve had a laptop in on a session and that was primarily because I’ve been looking for other studios in Atlanta for when I finished here). After everything, they just regard me as being lazy and uncaring, when that is the complete opposite of what is going on in my head. I was insulted and confused, and I’ve been spending most of today going over in my head whether they were even right or not. They told me to follow up with them tomorrow on what my decision is going to be, and for once I’m not going to change my mind. I’m not going to be convinced of what other people are telling me after all of the mixed signals and feelings they have given me over these last four months. I’m not going to follow the example of people who don’t give two shits about what their own interns do at their own studio.
It’s awful feeling like you are not needed. After all the effort we put into as students to come off as professional and punctual, only to come to a place with people who speak crudely and act like snobbish teenagers, is just insulting. What makes it even more frustrating is that I have no clue if this is going to have any repercussions for my future, but I cannot afford to stay there any longer. I ache to find a place that will actually help me to learn, rather than just leaving me astray and expecting me to figure it all out. I wish I were skilled enough to do that, but I’m not. I need people that want to help me to learn, not those who just view me as a meatbag sitting in the chair beside them hoping to get paid one day.
I’m not looking forward to what’s going to happen tomorrow. I hope that this will not be for nothing.