If you have the resources (money in the bank) and/or have a free place to live with expenses paid (mom and dad’s basement) an internship could be a great way to work yourself into a job. Most don’t pay anything at all, but they should at least pay some of your gas money, free lunches, free swag, etc. Remember, the way they treat you as an intern is the way they’ll treat you if you get a job there.
An internship can be a great way to get to know a company from the inside. It’s a great way to find out if you like the company culture and the people that work there. You’ll be able to work in the industry for a while and figure out whether it’s the right career for you or not. You might want to talk to former interns that have worked there before and see how they liked the experience.
I’ve never done an internship myself, but I’ve heard that some of them are hard to get into. So, why not start with a smaller company, like a mom and pop or a start up company. It might be better anyway, since you’ll get more of an entrepreneurial education, which will serve you well no matter what you go on to do.
Also, check out this book by Michael Landes called “The Back Door Guide to Short-Term Job Adventures: Internships, Summer Jobs, Seasonal Work, Volunteer Vacations, and Transitions Abroad
If you have the time and don’t need to make money right away to pay your bills, an internship could be the answer.