The Ultimate College Internship Guide Part 4: Post Internship
It’s almost summertime for college students around the country, and that means it is time to start thinking about getting an internship. Internships can be a great way to get firsthand experiences in the field you may want to pursue after graduation. They also look great on resumes for new graduates, and many do pay, so you can have some spending money. Finally, it can be a good way to start building your professional network and making industry connections for after graduation.
If you’re thinking about getting an internship this summer, here is your guide to nailing the process!
The follow up to an interview is extremely important as well. Within 24 hours, you need to ensure that you’ve sent a thank you note to everyone you’ve met. Depending on the company culture, this should be hand written and mailed. If there are two highly qualified candidates, and one writes a thank you note and the other doesn’t, chances are that last gesture can get you the internship. Beyond that, it is just polite.
Once you land the internship, the first day is no different than any other part of the process. You should think of your internship as an extended job interview. Many companies utilize their internship programs to assess future talent, and it is common practice to even offer great interns jobs upon completion of the internship. That means you need to dress well every day, and act professional at all times. Whether you think you are or not, you are being judged by management at all times.
After completing the internship, your work is still not done. If you really enjoyed working at the company and found some individuals with which you relate, you should stay in touch. By building your professional network now, it will pay dividends later. Whether you join that company or go somewhere else, having solid industry connections with which you keep contact with is essential.
And the contact doesn’t have to be in depth. You may just email once a month and check in with how the project you were working on is still doing. Or, you could ask an individual with whom you made a connection about career advice. These little connections can go a long way to helping you network and get a job upon graduation.
Readers, I know this was a long post. Hopefully you can share some advice about getting an internship with our readers!
Want to learn more about internships? Explore these additional iGrad resources.
Robert Farrington is the founder and chief editor of The College Investor, a website dedicated to personal finance for young adults and college students. Robert earned his MBA from the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego, and his B.A. in Political Science from UC San Diego.
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