So I started my internship 2 days ago. The company is a multi-billion dollar corporation and I got an internship there with a $30/hr rate. It sounds great on paper and everything, but I haven't enjoyed it so far. The first 2 days have been very hands off and slow. I feel lost and don't feel like I'm getting enough training or mentorship in the beginning so that I can get a clue on what to do. They didn't have a project defined for me yet to start working on and I'm not sure what kind of path I'm headed towards. I feel like I could've hypothetically go the entire day without doing a single productive thing if I didn't ask my manager/mentors multiple times throughout the about what tasks I should work on as I complete each of them. I thought they would have a more proactive training approach, but it looks like I have to initiate everything.
On the contrary, a college course with a project tends to be very structured and clear-cut. There are pre-defined deadlines and the material I'm supposed to learn is all defined and source of the learning material is in a cohesive location (ex: textbook, slides, etc). This follows a "being told what to do" system while working at a company seems more like "volunteering to do whatever I can to be a valuable member of this company", which I'm not used to doing at all. This internship has been very different so far because there is no clear plan and path to follow like for the courses. It makes me wish I was back in school.
I didn't know what to expect from an internship, so I was hoping someone could tell me how tech companies handle their interns and what I can expect from them in terms of help/guidance and what I'm expected to do and figure out on my own. Are intern projects isolated from the company's real operations/goals? I just want to make sure I don't expect the wrong things and be disappointed when I don't get what I expected.