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7 Tips on Preparing for a Summer Internship

I know what you’re thinking: we just had Spring Break- do I really need to be looking for an internship right now? The answer, quite frankly, is yes.

As we all know, the job market is pretty competitive right now. A Siena education can go a long way in helping us all find jobs that we’re qualified for and passionate about after graduation, but we should also be doing everything in our power to help ourselves out along the way. Internships are an excellent way to gain some practical experience out there in- gasp!- the real world and form connections with professionals in your field. Here are some handy tips to help you land the internship of your dreams this summer.

1. Reflect on what you want to do.

Reflection is an extremely important step before making any sort of decision. Take some time before beginning your internship search to evaluate your professional goals, your interests, and your passions. What are you good at? What skills do you want to work on developing?

2. Make an appointment with the Career Center.

If you’ve never been to the Career Center, now is as good a time as any to go! The counselors there are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable, and will likely know about online sites or companies that you hadn’t thought about exploring. Make an appointment here.

3. Look on Career Saint.

If you’re looking for internships in the Capital Region, Career Saint is an excellent place to start your search. There are tons of local businesses looking for summer interns and this is where you can check them out

4. Check out some internship searching sites.

If you don’t live in the area and want to find internships closer to home, there are several internship search websites that allow you to search in a specific geographical location. Some of my favorites include Internships.com, Career Rookie, and New York Leaders.

5. Draw on your connections.

We all have connections of some sort, and it’s okay-and advised- to utilize them. Start by talking to your parents, friends, and family-see if anyone knows of a possible opportunity for you in your field. Check if your co-workers or current or former supervisors know of places that are searching for interns. Search through LinkedIn and contact any of your connections that might know of available opportunities. Finally, and possibly most importantly, talk to professors that you’re close to or that may have connections in your field of interest. They might be able to direct you to professionals in that field that can help you get the internship.

6. Update your resume and LinkedIn profile.

You’ll want to have a clean and polished resume when you apply for internships and head in for interviews. Use this time as a more stress-free time to highlight your past experiences. On that same vein, make sure to update your LinkedIn profile, as many employers will also explore it if you apply.  

7. Organize and apply.

Once you have a list of possible internships in mind, organize them according to due date. Make sure to note what you have to do for each and if you need to have letters of recommendation, as some things may take more time and planning ahead.

With that, you’re set, and on to the fun part: time to shop for professional attire!

Jenna Kersten is a Siena College Class of 2018 alumna. During her time at Siena, she was an English major with minors in German and International Studies.
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