Top 5 Tips For Landing a Summer Internship
By Chaim Shapiro
The New Year is here and for many students, that means it is time to start thinking about summer plans.
While summer semesters are a great way to speed up your graduation, that benefit must be weighed against the value of a summer internship.
Internships are what really make you stand out as a job candidate. Most major companies have large-scale internship programs in the summer, so the summer is probably your best internship opportunity of the year. Here are the Top 5 Tips For Landing a Summer Internship:
1) You are late! It may seem hard to believe, but if you don’t already have a summer internship lined up, you are behind in the game. Most major companies start recruiting their summer internship class in September or October for the following June. That means other students may have a four month head start on you! It’s time to get started right away.
2) Internships test-drive the talent. Here is a little inside information:companies judge the success of their internship program based on the number of full time hires "converted" out of the program! They do not hire interns for cheap labor or to help their employees make their coffee. They hire interns who they believe would make great employees and use the internship to verify if that is so. If you prove yourself over the summer, chances are there will be a full-time offer!
3) Focus on your target companies. There are a lot of companies that offer summer internships. Obviously you only need one internship, but your focus should be on finding an internship that will help advance your career. Focus on companies of interest and positions that will give you a good opportunity to utilize your career skills in the workplace.
4) Update your resume. Your resume is fundamental for your job search. Make sure that your resume makes a compelling case as to why you would make a great intern. Students have a tendency to forget about their resume during the school year, so make sure yours is up-to-date with your latest work experience, school leadership activities and GPA.
5) Internship career fairs. Fortunately, Career Services offices are aware of the internship “crunch” this time of year. Many offer an “Internship Career Fair” in the Spring Semester that focuses on helping students find internships. This is a great opportunity. The companies that come to these fairs are the ones that still have internship opportunities available! Seize the opportunity and contact your Career Services office for more information today.
Chaim Shapiro, M.Ed, is Director of the Office for Student Success at Touro College