How to Survive Internship Season
Internships can be vital when it comes to graduates landing a job. Most employers check resumes for internships, and students can be expected to have had an internship as early as high school. Luckily, for me,landing an internship hasn’t been too difficult. This fall I will be interning with a major company, which I will not name due to company policies. Unfortunately, some students are not as lucky when it comes to landing their dream internship.This article will include some tips for landing your dream internship, so you won’t have to be that student rejected from the same.
Before you can even think about interning you’ll need to build up your resume. The best way to do this without actually working is to earn some leadership experience. A great way to earn leadership experience is by joining school organizations and becoming an officer. It’s important that your resume fits the internship you’re interested in. For example, if you’re interested in a media-related internship joining the school newspaper is a good idea or if you’re interested in a STEM-related internship joining the school science club is the right choice for you.
Once you’ve built up enough experience for your resume, it’s important that you have a presentable resume. It should not feature bright colors or images and should be simple and professional. Some employers only review resumes so it’s important that your resume is a direct reflection of who you are and why you would be a great fit for the internship. Some key elements to include in it would be contact information such as an email address or phone number, work and leadership experience and your educational background. In addition to a resume, some internships might request a cover letter, which similarly should present you in a professional manner.. Your cover letter, however, should be a compliment and not a recap of your resume.
Typically the next step in the intern selection process will include an interview. Interviews can be held in many forms; in person/ face to face, over the phone or via video chat. Unless your interview is over the phone, and the person interviewing you won’t see you it’s important to look presentable while attending the interview. You should dress business casual unless otherwise instructed. Your hair presentable which includes having it out of your face and lastly, your makeup should be classy and appropriate for a workplace.
The interview can be the scariest part of the intern selection process for some people, but if you think of it as a conversation rather than an interview you might be able to ease your nerves a bit. It’s hard to predict what questions employers will ask you because that might vary. Generally though they ask you why you want the internship and something about yourself. If you want ideas of more specific questions about what they might ask you, you could talk to a peer or someone who has previously interned where you are applying as they will be able to help you.. No matter how difficult the questions are, it’s important for you to act calm and not give rehearsed or unnatural answers. It’s also essential to not oversell yourself to the point where you are seen as arrogant or as someone who is lying. With that being said sometimes, you do need to sell yourself a bit, or else they might think you aren't interested or qualified for the position.
After your interview you could wait for days or even weeks until they let you know if you got the position. During that time it’s important to stay calm. If too long goes by without a response you can always send a follow-up email but don’t be pushy. If you don’t land the internship of your dreams you can always try again in a year or apply for a different internship and you might even like that one better. Good luck!