17 Things you'll only understand if you're an intern

These will be painfully familiar to some of you (or prompt some pretty awful flashbacks)...

The Devil Wears Prada

These will be painfully familiar to some of you (or prompt some pretty awful flashbacks)...

Being an intern is hard work (trust us – we’re journalists. We’ve all climbed the ladder) but for a lot of jobs nowadays it’s also an absolute necessity.

On the one hand internships are a fantastic way to learn, invaluable for making contacts and can also be a hell of a lot of fun, but they can also involve doing a lot of work for very little credit and (sometimes) becoming the scapegoat for other people’s mistakes.

So if you've spent your days pulling every muscle in your back heaving sacks of post up multiple flights of stairs or rushing around juggling multiple lunch orders and cups of coffee - this one’s for you.

Here are 17 things that you will understand if you are (or have ever been) an intern...

1) Turning up on your first day dressed far smarter than anyone else there And then heading straight to Topshop to invest in some casual jeans and Stan Smiths to ‘fit in’.

2) Never knowing when to join in on the office banter So just sort of hovering on the edge, smiling manically and laughing at everything anyone says.

3) Feeling a sense of dread when casually asking if anyone wants a cup of tea ‘I was just being polite, guys.’

4) Getting so used to being referred to as ‘the intern’ that you will gladly answer to any name thrown your way ‘Call me whatever you want!’

5) Coming up with code names for your bosses immediately so that you and your fellow interns can vent about them in public. ‘So “Philomena” and “Clive” have just given me far too much work’

6) Discovering the joys of the 'Free Table' and raiding the office supplies, from food you don’t like to the 12 staplers and 7 notebooks that you really don’t need But are nice to have… just in case you need to sell them to buy food…

7) Moving back in with your parents or sleeping on a friend’s floor to afford to live on your internship expenses ‘Thanks guys, I can pay you with robbed staplers and notebooks’

8) Learning the wonders of Google maps during your 7000 errands and subsequently using all of your iPhone data ‘If you could drop this off here, it’s not far… about a 40 minute walk.’ Oh right, great. Thank you for choosing me…

9) Eating your lunch at your desk because you’re too afraid to ask where the canteen is And then panicking for the whole hour that your food is stinking out the office…

(Image credit: Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock)

10) Being too afraid to use your phone at your desk so having to make regular toilet trips to text, put your feet up and have a breather ‘I have a weak bladder, promise…’

11) Hating on the annoyingly perfect intern who completely shows you up at every opportunity There’s always one… and it’s never us.

12) Complaining about having no money and then spending all of your hard earned expenses on Pret popcorn ‘No thank you, I do not want to see my bank balance.’

13) Having to take down notes because the office coffee orders are so complex ‘A skinny no foam soy mocha-choca latte with one sweetener and two and a half sugars, please.’ Really?!

14) Having everyone around you planning group drinks and after-work parties and never being invited ‘It’s fine guys, I couldn’t afford to get the Tube anyway’

15) Constantly being asked by friends and family what you actually do and having them suggest ‘why don’t you get a real job?’ While all of your friends and siblings are doing ‘proper jobs’ and are able to afford rent and food. #welljeal

16) Going to your first VIP work event and all of your hard work being instantly worth it The perks can be amazing and the novelty will never wear off.

17) Becoming friends for life with your fellow interns because despite your differences, you were in the trenches together and that bonds you for life. Throwback to every Chick Flick ever made.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.