Another semester has come and gone and you’ve survived. Whether you are a senior coming up on your last hoorah or a freshman still getting the hang of things, your winter break is a much needed, much welcomed, few moments of rest. Don’t sleep too much and miss out on your chance to get a jump on your summer 2018 plans.
The best summer internships are found in the fall/winter. Many Fortune 500 companies recruit on campus and online from September – December. If you are looking for a paid internship, you need to get on the ball as soon as possible.
Even though some companies have already filled their 2018 summer slots, there are many other worthwhile, awesome and valuable internships opportunities still up for grabs, I just want you to understand that you need to get moving on this process. Start with my free Internship Manual Toolkit that will help you stay on track during the search process. Even if you aren’t looking to intern for a big name company across the country, starting your internship search now and getting ahead can help you stay on top of it when things get busy again.
Why an Internship is Necessary
[x_pullquote cite=”S. Kent” type=”left”]Launching your career after college isn’t just about your major, GPA and extracurriculars…[/x_pullquote]
Companies now expect to see real internship experience on your resume before you graduate. Many employer’s are expecting to see multiple internships. Getting a job after college isn’t just about your major, GPA and extracurriculars, it is also about showing a company that you bring value, can learn fast and have been tested in the workforce. Internships give you that.
The internship experience isn’t just about the company, it is also about you. I did eight internships while in college. Each experience was different and valuable in it’s own way. Internships allow you to test out the waters into different careers you may not have thought of, learn new things and see how your classroom experiences translate to the real world. In addition, on average, interns make about $15,000 more per year when starting out after college.
Your internship search doesn’t have to become stressful or overwhelming. Check out these 5 quick ways to find an internship that have all been proven to work.
- Ask Around
- Get help from career services
- Search in unconventional places
- Online research
- Apply to internship programs
Read the article for full details and actions to take for each of these 5 ways to find an internship.
Don’t waste your winter break. Get some rest, see family, see your friends but stay ahead of everyone else and get moving on finding an internship. Pick up a copy of, The Internship Manual a Step-by-Step Guide to Finding the Internship of Your Dreams and learn everything you need to know to succeed in this process.
As a college student, you measure life in semesters. In a perfect scenario, eight semesters will lead you to the promised land of your dream career. In between those eight semesters you will have multiple winter and summer breaks. How you spend that time off could be the difference between finding your dream job, or moving back into your childhood bedroom after graduation.
It is December, the stress of finals is over and you are set to reclaim your sanity for a while. Bring on the 5-8 weeks with no classes and no clocks. Let’s be real though, after Christmas (or your family holiday) is over, most of the time you just kinda hang out around the house waiting to go back to school. After a week of binge watching Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones or whatever your particular viewing addiction, get up and make this break count.
Use this time to be proactive in your career planning. When your classmates get back to campus talking about how late they slept everyday, you can boast about the interview you have coming up for your summer internship. I’m an advocate for using your break to sleep late, hang with friends from home and eat as much homemade mac n’ cheese as possible, but find some balance and you will be better off later – especially when it comes to mac n’ cheese.
On my breaks I often worked as much as I could. Even if over break you plan to try and make as much money as possible, you should still do some proactive career planning. Here are 20 ways you can maximize your winter break. You don’t have to do all of these things, but pick a few that you feel you can accomplish.
- Volunteer with a non-profit
- Do an internship
- Job shadow at a few prospective careers
- Conduct informational interviews
- Look for a Spring internship
- Look a Summer internship
- Take a winter session course
- Take a class online (think computer skills)
- Write content for your blog – or start a blog
- Work on a business plan
- Read a few books (non-school related)
- Pick up extra hours at your part-time job
- Take on extra projects at your part-time job
- Work on your graphic design, music or writing portfolio
- Create or update your LinkedIn profile
- Create a resume and cover letter
- Take a road trip to research a city you are considering relocating to after graduation
- Plan your activities for next semester (what clubs to join etc.)
- Make a budget
- Research potential companies and careers
Before you decide which of these 20 things you might endeavor to do, reflect on your college experience thus far. What has this last year or semester taught you about yourself and what you want to do moving forward? Pick activities that will lead you closer to some potential clarity about your career choices. Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself and get uncomfortable. Now is the time to take chances and explore who you are and who you want become. Enjoy your time off!
It’s internship season! If you’re in college you should be looking for an internship right now. As a freshman, sophomore, junior, senior and even graduate student you should be in the thick of the hunt. If you haven’t started looking and applying you need to get moving quickly – like now!
The application deadlines for some of the more coveted internship openings passed back in November and December. Before you panic, remember that there are plenty of other opportunities out there for you to pursue if you are creative and remain open.
According to a recent survey by Glassdoor.com the number one destination for internships this summer will be Facebook followed by Chevron, Google, Quicken Loans and Ebay.
As the former senior manager of an internship program that placed students with major media companies across the country, I know very well the desire of many students to land their dream gig with their dream company. I had the privilege of being a part of that dream come true for hundreds of students. Big well-known company internships often come with not just a structured internship experience but also access to major corporate events, a team of other interns to collaborate with, access to the latest and greatest technology and are often in exciting cities like New York, LA, Atlanta, DC and Silicon Valley.
Interns at companies like Google, Yahoo, NBCUniversal, Viacom, Facebook and so many other places find themselves tackling innovative and creative projects and being a part of a team contributing to products and programming used and accessed by millions around the world. If you can land one, go for it!
I do want to remind you, however, that size alone doesn’t dictate the quality and opportunity to have a meaningful and amazing internship experience. When I was in college, I completed eight internships, some with big companies and some with small. No matter where the internship opportunity is, you have the ability to learn, observe, ask questions, and contribute to a company or organization. If you embrace the opportunity you can come away with what you realize later was your dream internship.
There are thousands of smaller companies across this country with 5-500 employees who gladly welcome interns into their operations throughout the year. The majority of American workers actually work for companies with 500 or fewer employees. Smaller companies and non-profit organizations can often be a great resume boost and opportunity for someone trying to get that first internship. More competitive internships often require previous internship experience, have strict GPA minimums or are reserved for upperclassmen.
My most influential internship experience came as the result of a referral from one of my professors. While my college (SUNY Oswego) itself is not a small company, I interned for two years in my University public affairs office, which employed only three staff members. I learned so much in that time about public affairs, writing, managing a publication and interviewing that eventually I pursued a master’s degree in Professional Writing and started my career in higher education.
While you are in the middle of your internship search I implore you to not forget about the little guy. Find a small local business, or non-profit, do your research and add them to you list.
The new salon that just open down the block from you might need a social media guru, a non-profit might need some marketing assistance to develop a campaign to recruit more volunteers or the local struggling restaurant might need help understanding profit and loss and your accounting skills could be very much in need. Get creative and don’t overlook opportunities where you are.
If you are serious about finding an internship then invest in yourself and get my book, The Internship Manual: A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting the Internship of Your Dreams and keep going until you lock down an internship!