For years you've been putting in the effort to achieve good grades. First it was at school, now you’re doing the same at university or college. You even know what it is you want to do when you finish your studies. However, have you ever stopped to think just how you are going to get a head start in your career?
This is a question that surprisingly few people actually do answer or even consider prior to finishing their degree, yet it is one which needs ample thought. After all, you will be competing with many others for the job that starts you on your career trajectory.
So the challenge - on top of all your studies - is to define your point of difference and to devise a plan on how you are going to stand out to future employers. Sure good grades are a plus, but employers want to see that not only do you know your theory, but that you know how to put it into practice. After all, as Harvard education Specialist Tony Wagner said in a recent interview: “what you know matters far less than what you can do with what you know”.
Internships, the key to kick starting your career
The opportunity to gain working knowledge of the industry you want to join or the chance to create networks which may prove valuable in the years to come should be something all aspiring professionals should want to take advantage of. Internships offer this exact experience and remain one of the most beneficial opportunities available to students finishing their studies.
In fact, taking time out of your studies or over the summer vacation allows you to enjoy the benefits something like a summer internship can afford you. Some of the benefits include:
- Ability to travel the world
- Hands on learning with industry leading professionals
- Can open the door to ongoing relationships with your sponsor company
- Marketable resume skills are learned. Furthermore, a prospective employer will see you are eager to get ahead - a very desirable trait in a potential candidate
- The creation of new friends and creation of unforgettable life experiences
- The ability to test different roles and make sure that your chosen profession is what you expect it to be. It’s almost a try before you buy scenario
Of course, as with anything, securing an intern position is not as simple as just applying. Like you, the firms looking to place interns have a lot at stake too. They are going to look to select from candidates who show they are eager, who have the tenacity to stand up and be noticed and who are ready to step out of their comfort zones, knowing that in doing so, they are opening the door to a world of opportunities.
So what are you waiting for? You career is just around the corner, why not take the first step and