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The Key to Landing that Internship

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The Key to Landing that Internship

As told by Millennials

Ashley Moreno

4.13.17

Getting an awesome summer internship is on almost every college student's mind. It’s an opportunity to travel, gain field experience, meet new people, and (potentially) make some money.

With over 20.5 million students attending college in the US, applying to internships can seem intimidating. Getting an amazing internship in a trendy location, however, is not as impossible as it may seem.

In a series of interviews, college students all agreed that taking advantage of your resources is the best way to jumpstart your internship search.

“Students should definitely utilize their university’s career service center within the first weeks of coming to school by setting up a meeting to start internship hunt," said Marcus DeMarco, a student at Penn State .

Searching for internships through your university is not the only option. There are websites that provide internship postings from companies looking for interns.

“I used websites like angel.co and other job posting sites to find startup-y companies looking for interns," said Natasha Baley, a student at Syracuse University.

When it comes to getting a successful internship, students should start worrying less about whether or not the internship pays. Some of the most valuable internships don't pay or even give college credit to students, but the experience that a intern gains could really help in their future job searching.

“Students should be shooting for a really good unpaid internship experience over a mediocre paid one," said Robert Gosset, a student at Miami University.



Another important factor in getting an internship is polishing your interview skills. Having a friend ask you questions is always helpful. There are websites such as interviewstream.com that help you prepare for an interview in pretty much any field.

"The key to landing a good internship lies in understanding the ins and outs of the interview," said Peter Haessig, a student at Villanova. "It is important to realize that interviewers are people, too. At the end of the day, they want to see if you are able to hold a conversation with them, and if you can be at ease while doing it. Show the interviewer that you can be someone they'd enjoy talking to at work every day, and you're golden."

Eric Chow, a student at Carnegie Mellon, mentioned that his key to scoring an internship is by having a large network of individuals who have the same goals as you do.

“I think that the key to getting a good internship is to network and build good connections," said Chow. "You can build these connections in everything from social interactions with friends, to going to professional networking events. Leaving a positive impression with people goes a long way with getting interviews and standing out in the selection process."

What many college students agreed on is that the key to landing an internship is networking. This means connecting with alumni who are in your field and getting your name out there.

“Its all about connections," said Gabi Forman, a student in Questrom at Boston University. "The truth is with the rise of social networking due to new mediums like Linkedin, it becomes 70 percent connections.”

Communication is key, people. A good way to start networking is to look around at your current social circle.

“Leverage network in order to get foot in the door," said Kate Fisher, a student at Berklee. "Parents, family, and friends will almost always be willing to help out with this.”

Taking advantage of social media is another good way to network. Websites such as Facebook and LinkedIn can be really useful when it comes to getting the internship of your dreams. By following and friending people who are already in your desired career field, you can find out about events and current advances in the industry.

"Messaging alumni on LinkedIn is becoming a really popular way to get your foot in the door," said Jane Rudley, a student at Northeastern University.

So, what are you waiting for?