You can gain experiences that enhance your education in many ways. Course credit internships, paid work experiences, volunteer work, and summer jobs provide valuable exposure to the type of work you are considering as a career. Experiential learning can assist you in determining what you like and don't like about a career and creat networks that are invaluable for graduate school recommendations and job opportunities.
The National Association of Colleges and Employers has information on commonly referenced formal experiential opportunities:
Internships, Co-ops, Practicums, and Externships: What's the Difference?
Graduate schools often look to relevant experience during college years to demonstrate your knowledge and commitment to your chosen field of advanced study. Experiences beyond classwork assist you in connecting theoretical academics with the real world. Letters of recommendation from internship mentors may be key to acceptance into a graduate program.
Experiences beyond the classroom are often essential in securing a job in your field after graduation. Research from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) identifies employers place a high value on experiential learning as those seeking their first job. Recent Albion College graduates say the number one resource they used to find a job was networking through an internship or prior job.
Read more from NACE:
Employers Seek Experienced Workers: Internship Experience Counts