How to land your dream internship: 5 tips to remember

‘Tis the season! Not to be jolly but to gear up for the “real world” out there!

It might be daunting to think that the “real world” has so many rules (can we please make #Adulting101 a thing?) and expectations for us all and getting started in being an upstart young professional might be just as scary. But not to worry! There is that middle ground between working and studying that many of us have definitely learned from–an internship!

Not only is an internship good training, it helps us glance into a world of professionals that we might one day want to join. Taking on an internship can also introduce us to the right people and give us that edge of experience that might just set us apart from others! Landing an internship usually isn’t as hard as landing a full-fledged job but it also isn’t just a walk in the park. Here are a few tips for you to land your dream internship!

5. Research and research well

There’s nothing more embarrassing than walking into an interview of a company you’re not familiar with. Prepare for the questions about the company that you eventually have to field by doing some research!

Look for background information, a mission-vision, and what they do. These things are often brought up when they ask you why you want to intern for them. And for you to express interest in interning for them, you should know a bit about them beforehand at the very least. Internships can often lead to bigger opportunities if done right so they want someone who knows what they’re talking about.

It also demonstrates initiative and drive, things they are definitely looking for!

4. Fix that resume with experiences aligned to the internship

Resumes are a quick glance into your body of work. If they are scattered and not cohesive, many people will overlook your application even at the internship level. After doing your research, construct your resume with relevant work and projects.

As much as you might be proud of the counselor experience you had at summer camp or any other work you’ve done, it might not immediately be aligned with what the company does or stands for. You can add those later on, start with what you think will really have those HR people latch on to your resume and keep reading. Put yourself in their shoes: If they’re looking for writers, would they feel discouraged reading about your venture into sales?

Many companies won’t linger too long on resumes so put your best foot forward in them!

3. Dress to impress

Looking good on paper is different from how you present yourself in person. Make sure you are dressed the part!

Dressing professionally shows that you can conduct yourself in a respectful manner and it sends a message that you are put together! It creates an impression. Coming into an interview looking sloppy can create a different impression that you want to leave. You could be a brilliant writer or graphic artist but if you come in an old t-shirt and slippers, the company might think you don’t take them seriously.

People’s perception of you also depends on the visual you give. So make sure you make a mark while looking sharp!

2. Prepare for the questions

Internships will often have an interview before one gets accepted–it’s normal but very anxiety-inducing! We feel you. The company definitely wants to get to know you, how you speak and respond, and how you interact. No biggie! They’ll definitely have questions!

Like what we said earlier, don’t forget your research. Look up common questions that will be asked! And then prepare yourself for any wildcard questions, too! How you deal with weaknesses, what is the hardest thing you’ve ever had to do, that kind of stuff.

You’re sure to do well the more you think about how you responded to problems and how you handled projects in the past. You’ve got this!

1. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and embrace rejection if it comes (but also celebrate success!)

Part of an internship is really taking a risk. You’re putting your body of work out there to be seen and critiqued by other people. So don’t be afraid! Hype yourself up to really be seen and be heard.

Your projects will really help you stand out. So volunteer more, take on more things that are aligned with where you want to intern. If you want to do an internship at a marketing place, get active with an organization that’s all about marketing. If you want to do an internship related to graphics, get involved with an organization that needs designers!

And, once that dream internship opportunity presents itself, *bam*! You’ve got an arsenal full of experience ready! And all with the same heart of what you want to do for that internship. They’ll definitely be impressed!

Applying yourself and risking is all part of it. Rejection is a part of it, embrace it. And don’t forget to celebrate where you succeed! That’s definitely very important, too.

We hope these 5 tips help you out!

What’s your dream internship? Let us know!

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