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Tips, Tricks and Gifs for Landing Your Summer Internship

Summer is just around the corner and, while we would all love to spend it tanning and relaxing at the beach, it may be time for some of you to check out the world of summer internships. It’s never too early to build your resume and prepare for the real world, so we thought we’d give you a list of tips and tricks to landing your summer internships.

When you’re browsing…

Utilize GoNova and the Career Center. Start looking through Villanova’s network first and foremost. One of the greatest things about Nova is that the alumni community is so strong and willing to help out fellow wildcats. 

If you haven’t already, create a LinkedIn. We’ve all heard the phrase “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know”, right? That is especially applicable when it comes to finding an internship or a job.  Once you’ve started your LinkedIn, join the VUAlumni and Student Mentoring group. It helps you to stay in touch with alumni, and possibly research a company or position that may pique your interest. 

Just think of it as Facebook for grown ups. You’re trying to be the most impressive person you can possibly be online and build a strong network of contacts.

While you’re at it, talk to your professors to see who they know. The great thing about professors is that they have a wealth of knowledge and contacts. It’s a good idea to become friendly with a professor–particularly one in your department. They will probably be more than willing to give you a letter of recommendation or perhaps call up an old friend to see if he knows a guy who knows a guy who knows of an internship. 


When you find something… 

The most basic thing to do is to research the company. And I mean do a lot of research. Try to get in contact with an employee there if you can, perhaps to meet up and see what his or her career path was like and the steps he or she took in order to attain the position. If nothing else, it’s great to get some insight and have someone at the company know your name. 

Secondly, research the position. Carefully examine the ad. Are they using any key words or adjectives that they want to see in an employee? Use that language in your cover letter along with examples as to how you demonstrate those qualities. However, don’t make your cover letter too long! Even 500 words is too lengthy; keep it simple and keep it clean.

Third, state why the company appeals to you. This shows you’ve done your research and that you’re not just sending out a blanket cover letter to a million different companies. Businesses want to know why you would be a good fit for them but also why they are a good fit for you. It demonstrates eagerness; they would prefer a candidate who is excited about them.

Have your resume proofread. A million times. A billion times. You can never have a resume that is too perfect. One page is enough, and please don’t go over! The Career Center is more than willing to help you work on it. 


When you get the interview…

Don’t be this guy:

Do more research. Even more than you did before. You want to know the ins and outs of this company like the back of your hand.

Peruse some career counseling websites for sample interview questions and prepare answers. Moreover, make sure you come up with questions for the employer. I guarantee an employer will ask if you have any questions for them, and not having any prepared is a death sentence. Ask them what a typical day would be like for an intern. To whom would you report? What do they like about working at that company? Would this internship have potential to turn into a full-time job?  If they seem laidback and like they could take a joke, ask them if they take their coffee black or with milk. Just ask them questions

Get a professional wardrobe. Do it. A pencil skirt (not too tight), a button up, a blazer, and practical heels should be sitting in your closet once you hit your sophomore year in college. 

Before you go in for your interview, tell yourself that your nervousness is just excitement. It works, I promise. And during the interview, sit on the edge of your seat. When I went to the Her Campus Intercollegiette Conference two summers ago, the Editor-in-Chief of Seventeen Magazine, Ann Shocket, gave us this simple piece of advice. She said that if you look too relaxed and lean back in your chair, it comes off as disrespectful or lazy. “You have to earn the right to sit back in your chair.”  


After the interview…

Write a handwritten thank you card and send it to the person who interviewed you. That person has taken time out of his or her busy day in order to sit down and talk to you. Let them know you appreciate it! 

Just breathe. Waiting on a response is the worst part, but it’s in the hands of the employers now. You did the best you could and it’s time to reward yourself with a breather and probably a lot of chocolate. 

And once you get the job or internship (and you will), celebrate with this harsh but wonderful reality: 

Samantha Galasso is from Wilton, CT and is the founder of both the Providence College and Villanova University chapters at HC. In her spare time, she enjoys napping, sarcastic commentary, inappropriate jokes, hanging out with her fellow Pi Phi sisters, "Friends" marathons, and general activities being ”liked” by the mass majority of people on Facebook. Her goals in life include writing the next great American novel and making the Billionaire Obituary in Forbes. 
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