A Guide for NYC Summer Interns

It’s that time of year again when college students swarm like pesky gnats and take over NYC. You might think that your days of skipping class, drinking on weekdays, struggling through a hungover, and late night shenanigans would slowly dwindle as you’re forced to step into the “real world.” But let’s be honest, that’s simply not realistic. Us students simply packed up our bags and stepped onto a bigger field, we didn’t trade identities. We might not know the in’s and out’s of living and working in NYC, but with the help of this guide you’ll be a few steps closer to success.​


1. Show Up

 This isn’t a college course, so you actually need a reason for why you can’t go!


  • Being hungover, hormonal and tired are NOT valid excuses for skipping a day at the office. Your boss will be wholeheartedly unimpressed and likely replace you.
  • Make sure you’re keeping track of how many times you call in sick. It starts to become a little suspicious when you’re sick every Friday and Monday. Also, be aware that your co-workers and superior will likely ask how you’re feeling. Make sure you’ve thought through your story, or nailed your fake sniffles.


2. Avoid the Hangover

Imagine eating 50 hot dogs, taking 6 shots of tequila, riding a roller coaster about 8 times and then having to write a report on whatever Donald Trump is up to these days. Sounds miserable, right? That’s why having a hangover at work is quite possibly the worst idea you could have. If you’re planning on drinking the night before an office day, make sure you:  


  • Chug 4 glasses of water before bed.
  • Set your alarm an hour before you have to wake up, and take three advil when it goes off. By the time your real alarm sounds, your headache will be gone.
  • Make sure to schedule enough time for a large, greasy breakfast before you need to be in the office.
  • Only mix liquor, beer, and wine if you have a deathwish.


3. Workout

 Summer’s here, so say goodbye to your stretchy pants and hop on that treadmill! Here’s why:


  • It’ll boost your endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t shoot their husbands (bosses, or fellow-interns). Also, watch Legally Blonde so you understand this joke.
  • It’ll help manage the stress that comes with navigating a new city and affording your Carrie Bradshaw-centric lifestyle.
  • It’s a good way to meet people that will encourage additional healthy behavior, and to network within your office. Brownie points for finding a running buddy that can also help you land a job.


4. The Happiest of Hours

 Happy hour is right around the time you get off work, and since you’re on a stipend budget you won’t want to miss any of  it. Here’s how to maximize your happy hour potential:


  • Wear a blazer over your cocktail dress (ladies) or t-shirt (ladies and gents) so that you can quickly change into your night attire before hitting the bar.
  • Keep track of time. You don’t want to get stuck with an expensive bill because you were ordering full priced cocktails a half hour after happy-hour ended.
  • Travel lightly. It’s not cute to roll-up to a bar with a giant backpack or briefcase. Don’t be that guy. Leave your stuff at the office.


5. Manage your stress 

Like I said before, this isn’t a college course, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be equally as stressed as you were when finals came around. This is what you can do to keep from ripping your hair out:


  • Get enough sleep. A recent article examined the sleep patterns of athletes that need to maximize their snooze schedule. Your sleep cycle is an hour and a half long, and you should complete 5 cycles a night. More than that and you’ll feel groggy all day, less and you’ll be utterly exhausted. Plan your schedule so that you’re falling asleep with enough time to get those 5 cycles in. You can thank us later.
  • Drink tons of water. It may seem like an urban myth, but water will help you keep a calmer mind and stay stress-free.
  •  Stay in the now. Getting ahead of yourself by stressing about all of your upcoming projects, your overdrawn bank account, or your dire need to do laundry, won’t help anyone. Focus on the task at hand, accomplish that, move to the next. Before you know it, everything will be done.


 6. It’s all about that work-life-balance!

  •  Performing well at your internship is obviously important. But you can’t achieve an optimal performance if you’re maxing out half way through. Take time for yourself, even if you have a lot going on in the office. You’ll focus better if you break up your day with a walk outside. Eat lunch away from your desk. Shut off your work mode when you leave the office. You’ll be much happier the next day.



7. Get ahead of the game!


  • Make lists, and stick with them. You know how many hours you’re working in a day. Plan out your schedule with realistic expectations so that you’re accomplishing projects before your deadline is lingering like a bad odor.
  • Not a list person? Still, don’t wait until the last minute. Just because you can’t organize your day by the minute doesn’t mean you have to wait until the 12th hour to get your work done.
  • Don’t let things pile up at home. Sure, your internship should take priority, but make sure you’re saving time to get your own responsibilities done like laundry and grocery shopping. No one likes a hangry intern with a dirty wardrobe.