Graduating from college is an exciting time filled with opportunity and adventure. Your journey out of college involves making some big decisions. When it comes to assessing all your options, figuring out how to get an internship after college can quickly become overwhelming. With Intrax Global Internships, it doesn’t have to be so complicated. We’ve created this simple guide to help you make an informed decision about your future.
From gaining industry experience to exploring worldwide destinations, a global internship role offers many exciting opportunities for growth, professional development, and international travel. In this article, we’ll help you:
- Define the right after-college internship
- Prepare your internship applications
- Be ready for the next stage of your internship application
Are you a college senior ready to explore your graduate internship options? At Intrax Global Internships, we help students get an internship abroad and start expanding their professional skills through work experience. Discover how we can help you get internships that provide critical career growth and network building in your field of choice.
Defining the Right Internship for After College
Considering your internship options before you graduate is a great way to secure your place in a program and move toward your professional goals. But where do you start? In this section, we’ll help you:
- Understand your goals
- Research internship opportunities
- Create a plan of action
It’s important that you don’t delay your internship applications to the last minute. Remember there are plenty of full-time students also researching their options for after graduation. The right internship for you is out there, and, with some strategy and persistence, you’ll land the perfect role. To ensure a speedy and diligent start to the application process, let’s dive into how to define your goals for an internship program.
Understand Your Goals
It’s challenging to set a course for your future when you aren’t clear on what you want to achieve. The most effective way to define the right internship is to understand your goals. Start thinking about the specific skills you want to gain through an internship program and where this experience will take you.
Some questions to ask yourself when considering your goals for an internship include:
- Which industries interest me?
- What professional skills do I need to develop?
- What kind of work do I want to do?
- Who are my ideal peers?
- What sort of network do I want to develop?
Addressing these questions will help you determine what your objective goals are for an internship.
The next step is knowing the type of internship you’re looking for. This will help you narrow down your search and tailor your applications accordingly. You’ll be able to clearly express your interest and use your existing experience to sell yourself as the ideal candidate.
Investigate virtual internships, paid internships, and global internships to ensure you have a thorough understanding of the wide range of opportunities available to you as a college graduate. Consider what would work best for you.
Are you eager to travel and immerse yourself in a new culture? Or are you interested in diving into remote opportunities that give you more flexibility? Identifying your ideal programs will assist you in defining your goals.
Research Internship Opportunities
Once you have a clear understanding of the goals you wish to achieve through an internship after college, it’s time to start researching opportunities in your desired field.
Internships are undeniably competitive. Applicants are sure to do their research on the best internships and what graduates earn based on their professional experiences. It’s important to be strategic in your research to ensure you are applying for programs that will benefit you and help you find the right prospective employer.
While you can utilize online job boards, company websites, and career fairs to identify potential opportunities, we recommend deepening your investigation through your values and interests. You’re more likely to be motivated to submit a well-written application if you believe in the program you’re applying for.
Talk to your professors, especially the ones whose classes you enjoy, about their recommendations for internship opportunities. Attend networking events that feel exciting to you and ask about others’ experiences with interning. Work with a team dedicated to providing the best global internship programs in your area of interest.
Next, collect as much information as you can about the internships that interest you the most, including closing dates, submission requirements, and any other necessary application documents that you’ll need to start the process of applying. Once you’ve completed your research, it’s time to create a plan of action and start applying!
Create a Plan of Action
When you’ve found which internships stand out to you, it’s time to create a plan of action. The easiest way to get the ball rolling is to make a list of all the programs you’re interested in applying for and then create a separate list with everything you need for each internship application.
A great way to add some structure to your plan of action is to create a calendar for yourself. Write down the closing dates for application submissions and work backward. Ask yourself, realistically, how long it will take you to complete an application and plan your tasks accordingly, keeping in mind that you want to be thorough in your written application and fast when submitting it.
Depending on the type of internship you’re applying for, you may be required to make a portfolio to showcase your work, best projects, and accomplishments. No matter if you’re going for a local summer internship or an international internship, creating a plan to assist you in building a strong portfolio and application is a surefire way to successfully stand out as a candidate.
Check out our 2023 Official Guide for more information on how to successfully land an internship.
Preparing Your After-College Internship Applications
You’ve done the research, you have a plan, now it’s time to put it into action. To prepare for your after–college internship applications, you need to be able to see your goal clearly and remain consistent in your efforts until you land the program you want. In this section, we’ll assist you in preparing for your applications by:
- Reviewing your resume and cover letter
- Applying early and frequently
- Staying positive and persistent
Your perfect internship after college is within your reach with preparation and a positive mindset! Let’s explore how you can optimize your resume and cover letter to yield the results you want.
Review Your Resume and Cover Letter
To best prepare for your internship after college you’ll need an outstanding resume that highlights your skills and accomplishments and a dynamic cover letter that expresses your experience and enthusiasm.
Your resume must highlight your relevant work and study experience. Ensure you list any part-time jobs, clubs, achievements, and volunteer programs that you’ve participated in. Use a resume template to help format your experience and list your relevant skills and accomplishments.
Next, follow the AIDA rule for writing your cover letter:
- Attention: Also referred to as awareness, the first paragraph of your cover letter must grab the reader’s attention. Tell a story of a recent accomplishment that is relevant to the role you’re applying for. You want to motivate the reader to keep reading.
- Interest: Once you’ve caught the reader’s attention it’s time to deepen their interest. Strike a balance between talking about your own skills and how they can assist the reader’s mission. As an intern, you’ll be stepping into a role that supports teams. Show your reader why they need you, in particular.
- Action: Last of all, you want to compel the reader to take action on your application. Express your enthusiasm, provide options for contact, and thank the reader for their time. Remember you want to make a lasting, positive, impression with your cover letter.
Your cover letter is the perfect way to share a bit of your personality and a lot of your passion for your field of interest. Be clear in your writing and focused on telling the reader why you’re the best candidate for the internship.
Top tip: When applying for multiple internship opportunities, optimize your resume to reflect your relevant experience. Write a new cover letter for each application and follow the AIDA rule to highlight why you’re the perfect candidate.
Apply Early and Frequently
You’ve got your plan, you’ve developed a clear and effective resume and cover letter, now it’s time to get applying. A key part of how to get an internship after college is persistence; you need to cast a wide net of interest in a variety of opportunities to see successful results. The more opportunities you apply for, the more likely you are to see a positive outcome.
Where possible, apply as early as you can. You’ll find the more internships you apply for, the more comfortable you become with the process of writing applications, cover letters, and tweaking your resume. Consider refocusing your plan of action, or creating a new one, when you find new opportunities you may have missed when doing your initial research.
Consistency is the most important part of success when working out how to get an internship after college. There is a wide range of international internships for college students that are waiting for your application to slide across their desks!
Stay Positive and Persistent
Landing an internship takes time. Don’t get discouraged by rejections, instead focus your attention on refining your plan of action and moving forward. Continue applying and the right opportunity will come along in no time.
Maintain a healthy routine during your internship application process. This will help you avoid feeling trapped in a negative headspace when you receive a rejection and motivate you to keep going. Some important things you can do to achieve balance while applying for internships include:
- Keeping a daily routine
- Seeing friends
- Working a part-time job or volunteering
If you find yourself having trouble securing a traditional internship, consider volunteering or freelancing in your field of interest first. This will help you accumulate the experience you need to successfully land an internship down the line and strengthen your professional skills.
If you’re struggling to find local internship opportunities, consider applying for virtual internships which allow you to work from anywhere. Or, apply for global internships where you’ll immerse yourself in a new culture and expose yourself to new experiences.
Get Ready for the Next Stage of Internship Interviews
You’ve nailed your application and you’re moving on to the interview stage. This is an exciting time and one that requires more preparation. In this section, we’ll help to ensure you’re:
- Ready for interviews
- Prepared for post-interview tasks
- Informed on how to work with Intrax Global Internships
Your internship after college is within reach. Secure your role by being prepared, informed on how to effectively make use of your waiting time, and becoming an unforgettable candidate.
Be Interview Ready
When you get called for an interview it’s important to be ready ahead of time. This means more than practicing your answers to common interview questions. You’ll need to do your research on the company, the position you applied for, and what skills you bring to the table.
A key part of being interview ready is being prepared for the internship interview questions. You want to relay your own experience of creating positive solutions to relevant problems and show your ability to successfully fill the role. Consider every aspect of the role that you may be questioned on and don’t be afraid to prepare answers for the areas of the role you feel less confident about. Ensure you find a way to express your enthusiasm to learn in areas where your skills or experience may be lacking.
For many prospective interns, interviews are conducted online. Whether you’ve applied for an internship abroad or domestically, being prepared for a call via Zoom is an important part of being interview ready. Some of our top preparation tips for an international internship interview include:
- Test your technology
- Dress well
- Get set up early
- Have a printed copy of your resume on hand
No matter how your interview is conducted, it’s important to show up with a positive attitude and confidence in discussing your relevant experience and interest in developing new skills. Relay your unique perspective, what you bring to the role, and why you’re so eager to intern for the business.
Once you’ve come to the end of your interview, you will find the interviewer outlining the next steps of the process. While some aspects post-interview are expected, like anxiously waiting to hear back, some other aspects of the post-interview process may be new to you. Some things you may need to prepare for post-interview, include:
- Technical assessments
- Follow-up communications
- Global internship research
In light of the new normal, technical assessments are becoming more commonly used in internship application processes, especially to measure proficiencies with industry-specific technologies. It’s important to be prepared for post-interview assessments that require you to apply your skills in a test that strengthens your candidacy.
For example, if you’re applying for a position that involves writing you may be asked to complete a writing sample. Ensure you are well prepared for a technical assessment that your interviewer may send to you post-interview by familiarizing yourself with the expectations of the role you’ve applied for, the type of work you’ll be doing, and the skills you’ll need to display.
If you’re looking to make a positive impression on your interviewers, sending a thank-you email for their time is a great gesture of appreciation and professionalism. Regardless of whether or not you get the position, thanking your interviewers for the opportunity is a polite way to continue communication and maintain your interest in the company.
Global Internship Research
If you’re waiting for the final decision on a global internship, post-interview is a good time to dive into research about J-1 visas and how you can maximize your abroad experience. For international students, figuring out how to get an internship after college and becoming familiar with immigration processes can be daunting. Gain a clear understanding of what your internship abroad will entail ahead of receiving an offer. Navigating your J-1 visa application process will be much easier if you’re informed about the details as early as possible.
Work with Intrax Global Internships
Working with Intrax Global Internships is a highly effective way to get ready for the next stage of your internship journey. We’ve assisted over 10,000 participants in successfully completing programs around the world and achieving professional advancement.
We assist you in building relationships in your field of interest that foster your professional growth. We can help you land an internship through the Exchange Visitor Program (EVP) and gain valuable work experience.
Start Your Internship Journey Today
Start your journey to becoming a successful global citizen with Intrax Global Internships. Our internship programs offer exciting opportunities to expand your professional skills and immerse yourself in new cultures. Contact us today, and discover how we can help you get an internship after college.
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