5 Tips on Getting Your Dream Internship and Job

Regardless of your major, doing an internship is a great way for you to not only gain insight and practical knowledge of the current job market and potential professions, but it also enhances the skills you already possess and help you discover new ones. Finding the right internship can also often lead to the beginning of your future career and help you gain a wealth of experience as well as open doors to ideas you’ve never even considered before. So take advantage of different internship opportunities and go secure that dream job with the help of these 5 tips:     

1. Recognise who you are

Knowing the kind of career you’d like to pursue is important, however it’s just as essential for you to recognise your own strengths, values and competence. Do you know what drives and motivates you in life? What are you good at and what do you enjoy doing? What type of internship would best compliment your studies? Make a list of your skills and motivations, because knowing who you are and what you want is a critical first step in deciding where to start looking for potential internship and job offers.

2. Research

Think outside the box and be creative, so that in addition to looking through recruiting announcements, attend interesting seminars and companies’ open days as well as browse through brochures and advertisements. Make sure to check out what kinds of professions the alumni of your department or faculty have been employed in and take advantage of the university’s career services and university-funded internship offers. Read up on interesting internship experiences online and don’t hesitate to contact potential employers directly. Remember that some of the best positions aren’t publicly advertised, so don’t be afraid to do some digging!   

3. Up your game

Have an adaptable and up-to-date CV/resume that corresponds to the position you’re applying to. There are a ton of free design templates and tips on how to improve your CV, and while it’s usually an advantage to stand out, don’t overdo it – think about how the overall presentation of your CV reflects the skills you’d like to highlight. Above all else, PROOFREAD, PROOFREAD and PROOFREAD some more, there’s nothing worse than appearing careless when you’re trying to impress a potential employer. Be descriptive, but don’t exaggerate and lie, it’s going to come back and get you eventually. Keep track of the applications you’ve sent and update potential employers’ contact information when necessary. Also be sure to finally create that Linkedin profile, more and more employers these days consider it a requisite for recruiting potential new employees.

4. Be open-minded

Once you get that internship, soak up as much knowledge as you can and be ready to take up challenges and try new things. This is your chance to learn new skills and develop your strengths and abilities, and to really expand your horizon on the more practical side of what a profession entails. At the same time, keep in mind that it’s okay to make mistakes and ask for help and guidance, and prepare for the possibility that your ideas of a dream profession might not reflect its everyday realities.   

5. Network

One of the most important aspects of doing an internship is that it could provide ample opportunities for you to socialise and establish connections with people from both within and outside your workplace, and this might come in handy later on when you’re seeking actual employment. So bring your “A” game when it comes to networking and make sure to exchange contact information – this is also where having a Linkedin profile could definitely come in handy. Recommendations are more valuable than people often give them credit for, so do try to be nice to your colleagues!

Above else, enjoy and make the most of your internship! Good luck and happy internship hunting!     


For more information on how to write your CV, where to look for internships and available job openings, or even just to discuss your career options, contact University of Helsinki's Career Services. Consultation hours are Mon to Thu 13.00-15.00. Also check out their flamma page