Welcome back to campus everyone! I know you are busy finding your classes, adjusting to this term’s schedule, and getting re-connected with friends but don’t forget to also start searching for a summer internship. You may be asking, ALREADY??? Yep, many employers hire their interns fall term for the following summer so in order to not miss out on an amazing opportunity, plan ahead! Below are 11 Ways to Get a Summer Internship from DoSomething.org with a few additional suggestions from OSU Career Services.
- Make a list. Figure out what you want to do – what interests you, what do you want to learn how to do, or what do you think you want to be in 10 years? Write down a few places or lines of work that come to mind. While you’re at it, scribble down a few basic things to narrow your search – what town or area, paid or unpaid, full-time or part-time, for school credit or not.
Not sure of your interests? Then you might want to take a career or self-assessment and/0r meet with a career counselor. We offer both at Career Services!
- Research. Look into big companies in your area; most big corporations have internship programs. Stumped? Meet with a career counselor and also brainstorm a list of people who have jobs you think are interesting. Here is a great list to get you started. Remember Career Fair is taking place on October 24th (University Wide) and 25th (Engineering) and it is a great place to find out about internship opportunities from companies specifically recruiting Beavers!
- Get creative. Don’t want to work in a stuffy office while your buds are hitting the beach? No problem. Look into museums, art galleries, publishing houses, nature centers, eco-research centers, whatever. You may want to check out some ideas on our Alternative/ Adventure Jobs & Opportunities section of the Career Services website.
- Hit the pavement. Online research for big companies and orgs is a great starting point, but walk around your city or town to see if any other places spark your interest. Be bold, if something looks interesting, walk in, ask for an application, or leave your info (including a resume) with them. Don’t forget to smile! Need help putting together a resume? Then check out these resources and come by Career Services during our Drop-In Hours.
- Don’t give up. So your dream workplace doesn’t have an internship program? The search isn’t over yet! Look up who you can contact in Human Resources or who the managing director of a certain department might be, and contact them! Let them know that you’re interested in interning and ask if the company has a program or a way for you to help and learn a few things. You might want to meet with a career counselor to figure out your internship proposal so that you are prepared before you actually set up that meeting with a potential internship supervisor.
- Make sure you can do it! Once you have a few places, ask yourself: Got a ride? OK’d it with your parents/family? Is it realistic for you to get to the internship during the summer? Make sure you can get a ride (or map out your bus/train route), and if you can walk or bike, even better! You don’t want to commit to something and have to pull out at the last minute, so cover your bases.
- Get that resume in shape. What’s a resume and how do you make one? Check out these resources and come by Career Services during our Drop-In Hours for feedback.
- Make contact. If your internship has a formal application program, write out your application and apply, AND do a little digging to find out who might be getting that app. Give HR a call and ask who handles hiring. Send them a written note or an email explaining why you’d like the job and what makes you good at it. A little extra goes a long way.
- Spread your net. It’s tempting to put all your efforts into that dream job, but there are ton of people vying for internships, so make sure you look into at least five options and make contact with them so you have plenty of choices!
- Snagged an interview? It’s important to dress appropriately and remember a few simple things. Check out our resources on interviewing and schedule a mock (practice) interview with Career Services. Don’t have the time to practice with someone in person? Then do one virtually through InterviewStream.
- Follow-up. If you talked to someone at a company or had an interview, make sure to thank them and remind them you’re out there and would still love to intern with them.
Posted by Jen Busick Stewart, Career Advisor & Outreach Coordinator at Oregon State University
Advises students about internships and the job search, applying to graduate school, resumes/cover letters, and interviewing. She also organizes and updates resources, manages social media for Career Services and coordinates outreach opportunities. She enjoys working with students in coming up with a plan to finding a job and assisting them with figuring out the next steps. She has a lot of international experience, including the Peace Corps, study abroad, and independent travel.