Students today are familiar with many benefits of an internship – real world experience, learning opportunities and the chance to network. But most want to know the answer to one question: Will it get me a job?
Rest assured, research supports that students with an internship are nearly twice as likely to receive a job offer when they graduate. If that isn’t enough, those students are also most likely to receive a higher starting salary when compared to those without internship experience.
To better understand what it takes secure an internship, FIU News asked Martha Rosa, assistant director of internships at FIU’s Career Services Office, to give us her top six tips.
1. Start your research
Already decided on a major? Great! But have you given any thought to what kind of industries and companies interest you? Now is the time to start researching those companies. Research is more than a quick minute glance at a company’s “about me” page. It’s digging deep into their website, learning about products and services, identifying competitors and really knowing what they do. If they have been in the news lately, find out why. Are they going international or staying local? These are all things that you should know that will help you sell yourself in a future interview.
2. Get social on social media
Social media is awesome for opening doors and giving you a peek into how a company functions, learning their values and seeing their culture. Add them to your clean and professional Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account. This way, you will be up to date on the latest news about the company. Also, take advantage of LinkedIn, where you can see if the company is hosting any events, networking sessions or fairs. If you’re feeling brave, reach out to a recruiter or an employee at the company and begin to build your network!
3. Update your docs
Update your resume and cover letter today! The last thing you want is for the dream internship to be posted and your resume is still in draft mode. Include all of your work experience, volunteerism, affiliations and anything that can make you stand out – professionally that is. Also, don’t forget to check the documents for grammar and spelling errors – two to three times is preferred.
4. Visit your support team at FIU’s Career Services Office
You have cheerleaders ready to cheer you on and get you going. Your support team is also known as the Career Services Office. We have advisors who are ready to meet and prepare you for whatever opportunity arises. They provide students with career counseling, resume writing, professional development, career fairs and more.
5. Maximize with the Panther JOBLink
You don’t have to go on the job search alone. FIU Career Services provides students with access to the Panther JOBLink, an online database that runs 24/7 to provide you with the latest internships and employment opportunities. Remember those cheerleaders? Well, they also vet employers to ensure you are seeing real opportunities that can align with your major.
6. Meet employers during Internship Week
Networking is key in getting any employment opportunity. Where better to network than right on campus! Join us for Internship Week, Feb. 22 – 26, where there will be a variety of workshops and panels designed to showcase the importance of internships and how to find the right one for you. Did we mention employers will be there too?