Source: Huffington Post
Posted: 04/02/2014 11:47 am EDT Updated: 04/02/2014 11:59 am EDT
It’s that time of year again. All of your friends are hearing back about their internship applications, but somehow you missed the memo and haven’t sent out a single application yet. With all your schoolwork and your busy social life, you may not have realized that summer is approaching — and fast. It happens; sometimes a busy collegiette gets so caught up with other things that her career plans can fall to the bottom of her priority list. But don’t worry; it’s not too late to snag an amazing internship! We talked to the experts about how to find an internship at the last second.
Start with recently posted positions
While many companies like to get a head start on hiring summer interns, this isn’t always the case. Start out your search by combing through job-posting sites. Tom Dezell, author of Networking for the Novice, Nervous, or Naïve Job Seeker, says you can try larger websites like Internships.com, but that “with any of the large career and job sites, you face the stiffest competition.” He recommends CollegeRecruiter.comor aggregator sites like Indeed and Simply Hired. Aggregator websites pull job postings from all over the web and put them in one place. They’re basically Google for your job search!
When searching for internships at the last minute, be sure to keep an eye on the date of postings. If you’re looking at a position now that was posted two months ago, it’s probably already been filled. Most of these websites will let you sort postings by date; start by applying for recent posts first so you can be one of the first applicants in. By focusing on these recent posts, you’ll seriously increase your chances of getting a position late in the game!
Reach out to alumni from your school
One of the most valuable resources you have as a student is the people who used to be exactly in your place. Usually, alumni love to help students from their alma mater. If you’re struggling to find an internship, Dezell says to seek alumni out during your job hunt. “Check with both the career center and alumni offices for possible contacts and introductions to alumni in fields you hope to pursue,” he says.
Career center associates usually keep track of prominent alumni in different industries, particularly those who would like to stay in touch with the school and its students. Make an appointment with an associate in your career development office and ask if there are any alumni he or she thinks you should be talking to! Ask for the alums’ contact information so you can email them.
You can seek out alumni online, too. “If you have started using LinkedIn, you could look up alumni at target companies and reach out to them directly,” Dezell says.
LinkedIn is an important career resource, so if you’re not already on it, make a profile ASAP! You can use the alumni search function to look for alums in your field, or you can try searching the whole site for the name of your school and of companies you’re interested in.
When you’ve found an alum whom you want to get in touch with, send him or her an email or personalized LinkedIn request explaining who you are and what your professional interests are. Tell the alum how you found his or her information, and ask if you can get together to talk about the industry. Don’t ask for an internship directly; mention that you’re looking for one, but focus on wanting to learn about the alum and his or her job.
Once you’ve started a conversation with an alum, tell him or her about what you’re interested in. Emily Miethner, founder of FindSpark, a community for young, creative professionals, says to “be specific about what type of role you want at one type of company. Otherwise, it’s hard for people to help you.”
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