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The Internship Search: Personal Preparation and Strategies for Success. Department of Career Services University of Connecticut. Thinking about an Internship?. Determine your needs Develop professional, transferable skills. Figure out if you are on the best career path

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the internship search personal preparation and strategies for success
The Internship Search: Personal Preparation and Strategies for Success

Department of Career Services

University of Connecticut

thinking about an internship
Thinking about anInternship?
  • Determine your needs
    • Develop professional, transferable skills.
    • Figure out if you are on the best career path
  • Define your purpose
    • Prepare for graduate/professional school and/or a future professional position.
  • Gain advantage in a highly competitive process
  • Companies are already posting positions and interviewing on campus
steps to finding an internship
Steps to Finding an Internship

Four steps to consider:

  • Assessing Yourself
  • Organizing the Process
  • Preparing for the Position
  • A Successful Experience

Each of these steps is covered in more detail on the future slides

assessing yourself
Assessing Yourself
  • What is important to you?
    • Know your values, skills, and interests
      • What are you good at doing?
      • What do you like to do?
      • What is essential for you to succeed?
    • What skills are employers seeking?
      • NACE: National Association of Colleges and Employers lists Communication as the number one skill they are seeking.
      • NACE: Same survey also indicates that the number one skills candidates lack is Communication
assessing yourself cont
Assessing Yourself, cont.
  • Thoughts to consider:
    • Commuting/Relocation – where are you willing to live or drive to get the position?
    • Hours – how many hours are you willing to work?
    • Paid/Unpaid – will you work without pay?
    • Option of earning credit –
      • It can be very beneficial to learning, and sometimes is the only way to get a position.
      • Earning credit for an internship is taking a class. You pay the University to earn credit, even in the summer.
    • Small company or large?
    • Name of organization or work itself –which is the biggest reason to take a position?
organizing the process
Organizing the Process
  • Make a timeline
  • Create a checklist of activity
  • Excellent example in the orange Internship and Co-op Guide in Career Services (available in Career Services, CUE 217 or in the red box: http://www.career.uconn.edu/internships.html
    • Important to think six months ahead of time
      • Can use a backwards calendar or
      • Can use a checklist
  • Set up a filing and organizational system
preparing for the position research
Preparing for the Position - Research
  • Identify Prospective employers and review their websites and other directories for content
  • Some programs are group oriented, others individually focused –which do you want?
  • Use the internet carefully and discriminately
  • Talk to people who may know something about the organization – other students, alumni, faculty, etc.
  • Career Services has resources to support your efforts: HuskyCareerLink, Vault,

Career Search, On-campus Fairs

preparing for the position networking
Preparing for the Position -Networking

Networking can often establish connections that lead to unadvertised internships…

  • Establish a credible network with family, friends, teachers, and Career Services events
  • Critical in today’s economy to establish and maintain personal contacts
  • Hundreds or even thousands of internships only shared via personal relationships and network contacts so always be thinking about possibilities
  • Attend Information Sessions – meet the

employers without the crowds, your chance to be Memorable!!

preparing for the position finding positions on the internet
Preparing for the Position – Finding Positions on the Internet
  • Use the internet strategically – think twice before posting a résumé or submitting other personal information into a national database/website
  • Career Services has an online recruiting system where employers are screened before posting positions – HuskyCareerLink, found at www.career.uconn.edu, log in with NetID
  • The Internship website connects students with academic information and recurring opportunities, both regionally and nationally, log in with NetID www.internships.uconn.edu
  • Online search firms may charge fees – determine

the reason for a fee before paying anything

preparing for the position professional associations
Preparing for the Position -Professional Associations
  • Join Professional Associations – learn about the field, jobs, mentors, etc. Untapped resource for students. See samples on the majors page in www.internships.uconn.edu
  • LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com – a professional social networking site; only put information on it relevant to occupational interests, includes a virtual résumé
  • Husky Alumni Network - www.uconnalumni.com/HAN - a feature from the Alumni Association which allows all students to search for people in different companies who are also UConn Alumni. Go to the Get Involved tab to find chapters and international connections.
preparing for the position r sum
Preparing for the Position – Résumé
  • Develop a purposeful résumé
    • Include a clear objective -

Seeking an internship in the xx industry demonstrating

a, b, and c skills

    • Show related experience
    • Emphasize skills within the content of the experience, coursework, activities, etc.
    • Demonstrate accomplishments
    • List all entries in reverse chronological order with the most current, in present tense, first, within each section
        • Come to Career Services for a résumé critique to best market your abilities
advice employers want students to know
Advice Employers want Students to know
  • Apply Early
  • Demonstrate a balance of education, experience and activities on the résumé and in the interview
  • Make your résumé and cover letter specific to the opportunity that is offered
  • Be open to all types of work within the field or industry
  • Be open-minded to unpaid or lower paid opportunities
  • Networking – know how and then do it
  • Have a “I’ll do whatever it takes” attitude
  • Follow through with thank –you notes when interviewing and at end of internship
          • December 2008 Career Services Employer survey
a successful experience
A Successful Experience
  • Set up a learning contract – will likely be required if earning credit, beneficial to make sure intern and employer are thinking similarly for tasks and assignments. See a sample learning contract in red box on this page: http://www.career.uconn.edu/internships.html
  • Keep a journal of activity – helps the intern keep track of projects and tasks, useful when writing a résumé
  • Do your job properly
  • Observe the company culture
  • Discuss getting career related tasks with your supervisor or mentor
  • Use Organization resources -
    • Company Intranet/manuals and policies
    • Human Resources and Hiring Managers
before the internship ends
Before the Internship Ends
  • Go over your performance during an evaluation
  • Arrange for references
  • Discuss follow up employment, for school year and/or breaks
  • Collect business cards from people in organization
  • Keep in contact with key people once the school year begins again – be sincere
what do i do next
What Do I Do Next?
  • Questions about the process? Feel free to come to Career Services (CUE 217) to talk to one of the staff members about searching for internships, earning credit, or other general questions
  • Sample résumés, learning contract, and other resources also available in the Department of Career Services
department of career services cue 217
Department of Career Services, CUE 217
  • Hours: Monday-Friday,

8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

  • Undergraduate Résumé Critiques: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Walk-in Career Counseling:

Monday-Friday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

  • Mock Interviews, Cover Letters, and Graduate CV reviews, by appointment
  • www.career.uconn.edu, 860-486-3013

2009-2010