How to Land an Internship

Whether you’re nearing the end of your college career or a recent graduate, chances are you’ve heard all about how important internships are. Well, it’s the truth! Agencies and organizations are looking to hire young professionals with some sort of prior relatable experience on their resume.

If you’re in this demographic, you know how hard it is to land an internship! With pretty much every college student and grad applying to multiple internships, how do you stand out from the crowd and put your best foot forward?

There are multiple bases you must cover if you’re going to get the internship experience you need:

Be prepared
From your resume to your application deadlines, make sure you’ve got it all together. Have someone you respect double check your resume and make sure it’s suitable to apply with. Note all application deadlines to ensure you’ve applied within a reasonable window of time. If you’re fortunate enough to get an interview; dress and act the part. Demonstrate your professional side by bringing a resume, dressing appropriately and knowing as much as you can about the company.Practicing your interviews with friends and family or recording yourself can really help with your interview skills.

Research!
This might be the most important step in your internship search. It seems like common sense, but you would be surprised how many college-age students blast their resumes to every internship they find without doing the necessary research. With any company you’re applying to, spend time looking at their website, learn about what they do, their clients, their values and incorporate these aspects into your resume and cover letter. Additionally, research the people. Use LinkedIn to your advantage and see if you have any mutual connections with current employees at the company.

Showcase your passion
Regardless of your GPA or coursework, showing your passion and interest in the industry is of utmost importance. As part of the marketing, creative and IT industry, showcase WHY you want to work in the industry and your own personal interest in doing this type of work. If you’ve done things outside of school, taken extra steps to educate yourself or done anything unique to demonstrate your passion, use this to your advantage! Things such as building a website, having an online portfolio or doing social media for a non-profit, etc. Hiring managers can deal with a lower GPA as long as they feel they’re hiring someone with a genuine passion and interest in the work they will be doing.

Connect
Every job seeker knows the value of having an established network but chances are if you’re a recent graduate, your network may be relatively small. So, use what you’ve got! Speak to family and friends and try to connect with potential contacts at your target companies. Reach out to people on LinkedIn, let people know you’re searching for an internship and be willing to meet with people for coffee/lunch for more information. Also, get networking! For a list of local events sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter. As you’ve heard, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know!”

If you’re looking for an internship, we recommend check out AdFed and MIMA job boards for local marketing, creative and IT opportunities. Check out more posts for job seekers on our scoop blog!

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