Internships are hard, and we found out the practical way

Lessons learnt from our first Internship at Paystack

In February, we decided to start an internship. It was to be a two-fold experience. As a small startup, we wanted to teach what we had learnt, as a way of giving back. Also, we wanted to use this opportunity to create a framework for our internships moving forward.

We started with a design internship that was to last for 10 weeks. We’d take three people, give them design training, space and internet, and pay them monthly, only to learn. Internally, we had a few goals

  1. Provide a conducive environment for the interns to work.
  2. Create a separate curriculum for intern work so they can learn independent of our fire-fighting.
  3. Discover individual intern strength, and help the interns move further along respective paths.
  4. Create a structure for internships that can be duplicated.

Three months later, and our first internship is complete! We didn’t spend as much time with the interns as we’d have wished to, but we managed to help the interns improve… a lot. Post-internship conversations with the interns showed a few things

  1. We should have created regular tasks and exercises for the interns. Operating a free schedule may have been nice, but they were looking forward to being hammered with tasks.
  2. Regardless, the interns all discovered what aspect of design they were better at and moved in that direction.
  3. The interns felt like they belonged, and appreciated that they could relate with everyone at the office. That’s an A for us on culture.
  4. Free lunch cannot be over emphasized.

We’ll definitely be having another internship soon, and this time better prepared. Thank you Adewale AkandeKache and OT ™ for an incredible experience teaching you and learning from you.

The interns (ex-interns 😢) wrote about their first day at Paystack. You can read from BobbyAkachi and Tomi. Please follow them on Medium, and everywhere.

Also, take some time to check out their really really dope final projects at Paystack.

Akachi’s Website —
VIO Sightings by Tomi -
Arrival by Adewale Bobby —

Thanks for reading ✊🏿❤️

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