It’s a given that you need to have done an internship during your college years, preferably starting your sophomore or junior year, in order to enhance your resume for a post-graduation job.
However, you also want to make sure the internship will provide you with the exposure, experience, and skills appropriate to the industry you want to enter.
Here are several considerations when seeking to target an internship that will fulfill your specific needs:
1. First, consider your needs. Do you need a paycheck? Will you need housing? When can you do the internship and for how long? Are you sufficiently prepared – for instance, have you practiced interviewing, have you been networking, do you have a mentor, have you written a resume, do you have a LinkedIn profile, have you researched the types of jobs that will interest you, do you know something about the industry?
2. Second, organize yourself. Make a plan. Have your paperwork done. Touch base with the college career center. Ask a professor for guidance. Explore internship opportunities at internships.com to see what might interest you and what is available in the industries you want to target. Think about what you could offer as an intern and plan an elevator pitch.
3. Third, research, research, research. Do your homework. If you think you want to work in business or finance, learn about the opportunities available, but also learn about what the day-to-day job actually entails. A great way to practice interviewing is to set up informational interviews with company employees with the intention of finding out more about the actual job. This has the added benefit of beginning your networking.
4. Still feeling lost? Explore the links below to learn more about various career opportunities. Turn to Beyond The U: Students Achieving Early Career Success for free guidance. Read our Blog for practical tips on all aspects of the internship and job search.
Places To Look For Internships
- Check to see if your college belongs to UCAN
- Going Global for those interested in going international
- Student Freelance
- ArtSearch for those in the fine and performing arts
- Ecojobs for those interested in the environment
- PoliticalJobs for those interested in campaign work and politics
- PolicyJobs for those interested in making policy