5 Signs You Should Quit Your Job or Internship

By Christine Ascher on February 2, 2017

At some point in your college career, you will probably work in a part-time job or internship, both to gain work experience and to make some extra money. These opportunities are essential for attaining knowledge of various fields and for learning what career path is right for you. You’ll be able to gain new skills and further your understanding of what you want to do in your career.

However, the internship that you once thought was a dream may not always turn out to be right for you. If you’ve been working in a certain position and feel that it may be time to leave, here are some red flags to ensure that you’re making the right decision.

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You’re Not Learning New Skills

One of the most significant aspects of having a job or internship while in college is the fact that it will teach you some of the skills necessary for your field, thereby making you stand out all the more when it comes time for you to apply for jobs post-graduation. If you’ve been in a certain job or internship for a while and you’re not learning any new, valuable skills, it might not be worth continuing.

Before you consider quitting, however, have a word with your boss to see if there are any possibilities for you to take on new tasks. If there don’t seem to be more opportunities for you in your current position, you’d be better off finding a different position that you’ll learn more from than staying in a job that isn’t teaching you any necessary skills for the future.

It’s Taking Too Much Time Away From School

When it comes time for you to graduate and apply for jobs, you’ll want to have a balance between work experience and good grades to recommend you for the best job possible. While this does mean that you’ll want to have some sort of part-time job or internship while in college, it should not be at the expense of your grades. If your job is taking too much time away from your schoolwork and causing your grades to suffer, you might want to consider quitting.

Because your transcript and GPA will be factored into your eligibility for certain jobs post-graduation, as well as for graduate programs, it’s important not to let your grades fall as a result of being overworked at your job or internship. Rather than reflecting an inability to manage all of your work, quitting your job to focus on your grades is often the responsible decision. If your job is getting in your way academically, therefore, it may be time to quit.

You Don’t Feel Respected

It’s a common stereotype that an intern’s job is to do coffee runs and other menial tasks; however, if you’re spending all of your time doing chores for your boss or other employees and feel that you’re not being taken seriously, it would be worth considering to look for another job in which you are treated with more respect. Try asking for opportunities to take on more responsibility before you really think about quitting; it may be that you simply need to assert yourself in order to garner some respect.

However, if you’re still being undervalued and your boss doesn’t seem interested in helping the situation, it might be time for you to find another job in which you are more respected and have more chances for learning and improvement.

You Dread Going to Work

While you can’t necessarily expect to always love going to work (though to be sure, it’s great if you do), if you find yourself consistently dreading the days that you work, that may be a sign that it’s time to leave your job or internship. If you’ve made an effort and have been in the same position long enough to feel sure that the situation is not going to improve, don’t feel guilty about deciding to quit. Ultimately, there’s no reason to force yourself into a job that you hate; if you’re unhappy and have been for a while, you may be best off finding another position.

You Know This Isn’t the Career for You

When you started out interning or working part-time, a large part of the draw for your current position probably came from the aspirations you had for your future career. As you gain experience, however, it’s not unlikely for your career goals to change. If you find yourself working in a field that no longer interests you, don’t be afraid to give it up and to try something else.

If you know that you’re not gaining experience that will be relevant to you in the future, don’t feel obligated to continue working in your current position; your time would be much better spent in a job or internship related to your new career goals or even trying out new fields that you’ve never previously considered.

By Christine Ascher

Uloop Writer
Hi! I'm Christine and I'm currently a junior at the University of Southern California, where I study English Literature, Economics, and French.

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