As a senior in college, I completely understand the pain of looking for an internship. I’ve searched since my sophomore year, applied, reapplied, fixed my resume then applied again and sometimes it seems as if nothing works. So here’s my advice to all the freshmen, sophomores, juniors and even seniors who need a little extra help snagging that dream internship.
P.S. Once your resume is spruced up, head over to this Thursday’s career event — SPARK: Philly— at WHYY Studios. SPARK will give you the opportunity to gain real insight into launching a successful career in Philadelphia straight from employers who have thrived here. Leaders from Philadelphia-area companies will encourage small group discussions by drawing upon their own experiences and answer any questions that you may have. The event will conclude will networking to connect with hiring companies and other college students.
Fix your resume.
Don’t have a resume? Make one. Seriously. You’re trying to sell yourself to an employer, so you want to highlight your accomplishments and everything that shows them you’re a good candidate. Don’t forget to include your school information. Philadelphia schools in general are very impressive, whether the big ones or small– don’t sell yourself short.
Know where to look.
There are so many different sites to use to start your search. Being that you are a student in or near Philadelphia, I suggest starting with Campus Philly’s career page. It has a whole list of internships in the city and in surrounding areas, and outlines exactly what the job entails.
Go into this with an open mind
When I first started looking for internships I only wanted to work with huge companies, but those are highly competitive. I’m not saying you can’t do it, but don’t let those big companies be the only ones you apply to. Start off small and work with what you’re experience is. You can find some real gems out there, especially in Philadelphia where there’s so much going on all the time.
Don’t forget to use your school’s resources
Most schools, if not all of them have some type of career education services. They are there to help you and even have their own search engines to help you find internships. These people are there to help you, so let them!
Apply. Apply. Apply.
Going along with keeping an open mind, you want to apply for a lot of internships at one time. Take advantage of how many internships are available, just because it isn’t 100% what you were looking for, you may end up loving your internship. A great place to find job postings? Campus Philly’s career site. They have a special Online Job & Internship Fair (OJIF) happening October 24-28!
Know your deadlines!
Landing that internship is a priority to you, so put it at the top of your to-do list. You don’t want to miss out on an internship you really want because you submitted everything a day late.
Keep track of EVERYTHING.
Especially if you apply for many internships. You don’t want to get a response from a company and have to scramble around to find out which one it was. Make sure you keep a note of which internship is which.
Go to networking events. (Like SPARK!)
Your school holds or informs you about networking events that go on throughout the year. Go to them! This is a great way to meet possible employers and connect with them. Also, Campus Philly holds great networking events as well, such as SPARK: Philly, that help you meet employers throughout Philadelphia.
If there’s contact info, contact them.
Everyone is busy, so sometimes you have to take that initiative and contact an employer. It’s ok to follow up on the status of your application– it shows you’re really interested and determined.
Don’t give up!
It feels like it’s all for nothing, but trust me, if you’re persistent and determined, it’ll all work out and you’ll land that awesome internship in one of the greatest cities in the U.S.
So there you have it, my advice to you on how to land that internship. Just take your time, sort everything out and you’ll land that job in no time. Good luck and happy searching!