The Summer Internship Program (SIP) offers a select group of Holy Cross students the opportunity to work directly with Career Planning employees throughout the year to hopefully attain one of the designated SIP internships for the upcoming summer season. However, SIP is only one of the resources available to students for finding summer internships. In reality, Hogan 203 is around to aid students with their various questions concerning applications, potential internships and/or careers whether they are part of SIP or not. I am writing this to give everyone a generalized list of steps that I have learned, both through personal experience and by working in the Career Planning Office, that will help one become a competitive applicant for internships this summer.
- Use your resources
Come to the Career Planning Center! Drop-in hours are every day from 1pm-4pm, so as long as you are willing to devote 30-40 minutes of your day to sign-in, wait for an available counselor, discuss your queries and schedule any sort of follow ups, then you are taking productive steps to finding an internship. I work in the office every day of the week (except for Wednesday) and I can tell you that I see some students coming into the office multiple times a week, and it definitely pays off (and will if it hasn’t already). And if you need somewhere to begin looking for prospective positions, Crusader Connections and the resources page on the Career Planning site (http://offices.holycross.edu/careerplanning/resources) are a great place to start. Over 500 internships are posted to Crusader Connections every year that are open to all students! Plus, you have access to the LACN Internship Database through Crusader Connections, too. Finally, if you feel like drop-in hours don’t provide you with enough time or attention for whatever you need help with, then you can come in and easily schedule an appointment (which can last for up to an hour) with Noriah or Beckey at the front desk.
- Perfect your Resume
Keep editing and revising, while maintaining routine trips to the Career Planning office for the advice of our counselors. The mantra you should follow with regard to your resume is ‘practice makes perfect’ because you will never construct the best resume you can the first time around. Your resume is supposed to show employers the best of the best with regard to your past work experiences, education, leadership positions and skills. The more attention you devote to this aspect of your application the better, because it gives employers a holistic view of what you can bring to their company. Personally, I have met with the counselors in Hogan 203 probably around five times total (from the very end of last year to the first few months of this year) solely for critique of my resume. I have found that the more times you bring it in, the better, because chances are you will get multiple views on your resume which allows for different aspects of it to be revised or improved.
- Keep applying
If at first you don’t succeed, try again. There is no limit to the amount of places you can apply – this aspect lies solely on your persistence in searching for internships that suit you. Don’t get down on yourself or give up if you don’t get hired for a summer position after your first few applications. There are people out there who sent their resumes to 246182946 companies and still fall short of landing a position, so don’t worry (unless you are actually approaching that arbitrary amount).
- Realize what your weaknesses are
This is one of the most important parts of the intern (/job) searching process. As Holy Cross students, we sometimes fail to admit to ourselves what our weaknesses are and what sets us apart from the rest of the applicant pool. Some people are really bad with interviews, some may even have problems with nit-picky grammatical mistakes in their resume or cover letter. Whatever it may be, it is crucial that you figure out what you aren’t the best at, and work towards finding a remedy for those faults. The counselors in Career Planning are there to help you with whatever you need help with! Come in to schedule a mock-interview or to go over your written materials, and the counselors will tell you what (if anything) falls short and how you can mediate those problems.
So that concludes the steps that I think are pivotal in searching for potential internships. Again, don’t fret if you weren’t accepted into SIP because you can still find a summer internship perfectly fine, as long as you are committed to the process. With this said, counselors in Hogan 203 don’t discriminate and/or care if you are in SIP or not – as long as you come to the office with your concerns and have the willpower to improve your various application materials, then you should have no problem finding a summer internship.