"This beach trip was nice, but I'm really looking forward to starting my internship next week!"
October 7, 2015
While it may only be the start of autumn, the hunt for summer internships is already on. If you’ve already found one, congratulations! If not, don’t stress out yet—we have advice from our experts that will help give you all the tools you need in your internship search.
First—step up your networking efforts. “A great start is by attending career fairs, networking events, company information sessions and joining student organizations,” Ashley, a hiring expert from Cardinal Health, says. “Companies often partner with student orgs and attend organization meetings. This is a great way to meet company representatives!” Make sure your LinkedIn profile is as updated as possible. List any classes you are taking or have completed that are relevant to your field, any volunteer experience you’ve had, any leadership roles you’ve obtained, etc. The more you can share about what you’ve accomplished, the more attractive you will be to hiring managers and recruiters when you connect with them.
Visit your college’s career services office or career center. “Many students forget to take advantage of the free services offered to them by their institution’s career center professionals,” Stephanie from Asurion says. “Utilize the resources at your university’s career center to build a strong resume, improve your interviewing skills, and learn about opportunities for internships and full-time positions.” Building relationships with the students and staff who work in the career center will help you learn about events, gather resources for your search, improve your resume and cover letter, and be a more well-informed and prepared individual, which will only help you in your efforts. Find time this week to stop by or schedule an appointment and give your internship search a solid boost!
Ask around. “Find out if there are any college alumni from your school in your particular field of interest,” Meredith, a hiring expert at ManpowerGroup, recommends. “Usually they remember what it is like as an internship seeker and will be apt to help out a fellow (insert your team mascot here!)” Connect with family and friends back home if you are visiting for your fall break or any upcoming holidays. Ask your professors or mentors if they have heard of any openings or opportunities in your field of study. Many students will stick to searching online, so you can stand out if you make serious efforts to connect face to face and in person with people who might have helpful connections.
Branch out. “Try to find a position that is related to what you are studying but keep an open mind,” Emily from Praxair, Inc. suggests. “For instance, if you are an Accounting major don’t limit yourself to just accounting internships – Also look in related fields like Tax, Payroll, Finance, Procurement, etc.” Since internships are short term and usually temporary in nature, they are the perfect opportunity for you to try new things and build your skills and resume. Looking at a wider range of options will be helpful in your internship search, and any opportunity you land will help give you valuable real world working experience.
Follow up once you have applied. When a company posts about an internship opportunity, assume that they are being flooded with applications. Don’t let that discourage you, though! Look for ways that you can stand out from the crowd and express your interest. Send a follow up email or message on LinkedIn if you have a direct contact or recruiter’s name and information. In your message, reiterate your interest in the role, express your gratitude for their consideration of your application, and give them a direct way to contact you. “If you are still in school, I would recommend reaching out to career services or professors to see if they know anyone at the company that they can reach out to and put in a good word for you,” John from Textron, Inc. adds.
Keep working hard! Searching and applying for internships can be a long and tedious process, but it can pay off in great ways. Use your resources and relationships to your advantage in your hunt and take it all seriously. If you have any further questions about internships, our experts are here to answer your questions! We wish you the best of luck!