Jessica Zelasko, ‘23 - Balancing school full-time while having an internship

Jessica Zelasko is a sophomore at Michigan State, studying international relations with a minor in Spanish. She is a student in James Madison College. She is planning on applying to  law school after she graduates to become a lawyer.

She applied for an internship as a legal intern at a legal office in Okemos, MI, in the beginning of this semester, and ended up getting the internship as a sophomore, which is very impressive. She works Mondays and Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. She does this on top of taking 17 college credits.

Her responsibilities as an intern is to do tasks such as opening up the office, making coffee, cleaning the area, checking emails for the attorneys, filing, and completing tasks assigned by the attorneys. She also has one class during the time that she is at work, so she does her class for a little over an hour while she is at the office. This can be a challenge.

“I’m really distracted during class because I always have things I need to do for the law firm, so sometimes I just find myself not paying attention in class, and doing stuff for work,” said Zelasko.

Zelasko also works at Sparty’s a couple times a week, on top of her internship and her classes, so she has a pretty full schedule.

However, working the internship while attending school has provided some benefits and valuable skills to her.

“I would recommend definitely doing it [an internship] during the summer because you need something to do during the summer, but also during the school year because it helps you with your time management skills,” said Zelasko. “Last semester, I didn’t work because I was laid off of Sparty’s because of COVID, and I still for some reason felt stressed, and now I am working way more and I still manage to finish all my schoolwork by Friday at 5.”

Any experience is valuable experience, and the more opportunities that come your way as a student, the better. It may be difficult to balance everything, but it’s good to get out of your comfort zone and have a little bit of a challenge.