A fair amount of us first year Warner students are looking into fulfilling our internship credit requirement, hoping to work on projects that are personally meaningful. But are those two factors mutually exclusive? How, you may ask, do I go about finding an internship position that is both challenging and enjoyable? Should I branch out to a different realm of education? Never fear; tips for your internship search are here!
- Check for available Graduate Assistantship positions. Prior to starting my internship, I received an email notifying students that the Rochester Institute of Technology Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education was looking for a new graduate assistant to help with student resume critique, career fair organization, and other job development projects. Because the opportunity was listed as unpaid, I decided to apply and see if I could use it as academic credit. I ended up getting the position and the duties translate to what I would do as a career services intern, so it has worked out, and I know it has for other students in Warner programs as well.
- Update your resume consistently. This may be the career services worker bee in me talking, but a solid, concise but detailed resume will catch the eye of potential internship sites. You can utilize free templates, seek assistance from career counselorson campus, and ensure that your most recent positions and capabilities are listed. Some students choose to have multiple resumes, specifying them depending on the jobs they apply for. Additionally, personalize cover letters and have references on hand.
- If you haven’t already, create a LinkedIn account- you’d be surprised at the amount of online traffic a thorough profile can receive!
- Get out of your comfort zone if possible. During my undergraduate career, I interned in a residential life office. Having had no previous experience in the field (aside from living on campus for all four years), I was nervous coming in, but the training I received was comprehensive, and supervisors are generally willing to answer your questions. Take advantage of being the “newbie,” and interview your colleagues. Perhaps a sector of education that you’d never been interested in will become a career pathway. In addition, variety never looks bad on a resume!
- Really get out of your comfort zone. I do not have personal experience with this, but some students whom I know from the Higher Education program have done internships in other states over summer periods. Utilize free time to research where it would be feasible for you to go, and email site contact points for general information and to introduce yourself as a potential candidate. Simply getting your name out there can go a long way. So whether you’re in a counseling center in California, or an admissions office in Alabama, there are a multitude of opportunities for which you can leverage your skills!