There's a right way -- and a definite wrong way.
Even worse than the dog eating your homework.
"The deeper I get, the more rewarding it becomes."
If you think the MTA is rough, they'll be a lot less accommodating during the end times.
When making a drastic career shift, come to peace with the knowledge that all moves may not be in an upward direction. Sometimes lateral or even downward movement is necessary in order to fully gain mastery of a new space.
You finally decided to ask for a raise. You have been doing well in your job and your accomplishments over the past 12 months speak for themselves. So, you gather your labor market data, rehearse your talking points, and set up a time to speak with your manager. Everything seems to be going well, until your boss tells you "sorry, that's not possible right now."
What better way to realize your dream then by testing it out. Having an internship isn't what is going to set you apart. It's what you do with it.
But as tempting as it may be to hole up with a big mug of cocoa and pine-scented candles this December, try not to hibernate all month long. Use the next few weeks wisely -- and get a head start on your job hunt!