Following on from the Summer Internship Series on the DIY Career Development Blog this eBook explores the topic further and is packed full with the blog series, the worksheets and lots of completely new content.
– What is a Summer Internship?
– Why do a Summer Internship? (inc Pros and Cons List)
– How to: find a Summer Internship.
– How to: Create your own Summer internship.
– Application Checklist
– How to: make the most of your Internship – tips and tricks
– Keeping a Record of your Experience
1. Wish List Worksheet
2. Research Worksheet
3. Application Tracker Worksheet
4. Initial Goals Assessment and Preparation for Meeting
5. Meeting Notes
6. Action Plan
7. Diary Sheet
8. Progress Tracker
9. Review and Feedback Worksheet
11. End of Internship Review
buy this eBook now
If you are doing a Summer Internship this Summer you can also grab the Summer Internship Record Notebook to help keep track of your internship.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway
Don’t forget you can still enter the giveaway to win a FREE copy of the Summer Internship Record Notebook from Printed Portal or a FREE copy of the Ebook in time for summer.
The competition is open for one week (closing at 5pm GMT on 7th July) … to enter simply answer the question
What do you hope to learn this Summer?
and email your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org together with your preference of eBook or the organisational notebook. Two winners will be picked from the most interesting entries.
As I mentioned last week it is important to take full advantage of your Summer Internship or Placement. As well as following the tips from last week it is important to also keep a record of your experience.
1. Take notes
Carry a notebook and pen at all times. Note down as much as you can about the things you are doing, the company and your co-workers.
2. Keep a daily diary
Your placement is likely to be 12 weeks maximum. Even if your don’t regularly keep a diary it is easy to jot down a line a day. Although realistically more detailed records are better. Try it.
3. Keep track of your review meetings, progress and any feedback given
You should have made a list of goals at the beginning of your internship or placement. It is important to keep an eye on these during your internship.
- Check off your goals as you complete them
- Review your goals periodically – if they are not being ticked off what can you do to achieve them?
- Add more Goals. When you are working in the role you will think of even more things you want to achieve and would like to do during your time at the company. Write them down.
- Discuss your goals with your supervisor (if appropriate) and consider whether you are meeting the goals the company has set for you.
4. Keep track of Contacts
On an internship you will meet a lot of new people. Make sure you keep in contact with those you click with and add them on LinkedIn or get their email address. It also helps to keep your own list so that you can keep extra notes like how you met them, tidbits of information you know about them and their skills/recommendations.
5. Update your C.V.
And finally, once it is all over make sure your C.V is updated to include this additional experience. Update your C.V using your notes and records while it is still fresh in your mind.
For the next part of the series I am writing a list of tips to help you make the most of your Summer Internship or Placement.
1. Be Professional
Make sure you act the part. This means being polite, dressing professionally and turning up to work on time. Any opinions formed should be based on your ability to do the job not the fact that you wear jeans to the office or always arrive half an hour late.
- dress the part – even if you are invited to take part in casual friday.
- watch your language
- don’t moan bitch or complain
- don’t indulge in office gossip
- don’t flirt with co-workers
- don’t drink alcohol at lunch
- say thank you
- address people correctly
2. Plan ahead and obtain feedback
Before you start your internship you should work out what you want to achieve. Have a chat with your supervisor on your first day and see what their expectations are, explain what you want to get out of your time and try to find a way to keep everyone happy.
- Check in with your boss regularly to discuss objectives, learning points and find out whether you are meeting expectations
- Have a feedback session
- take criticism under advisement and learn from your experiences
- share your point of view but don’t be obnoxious or a know-it-all
- if you are looking for a job – have a conversation about prospects and what the company is looking for
- build a relationship with your supervisor.
3. Learn as much as you can
You should have already made a plan about what you want to achieve during your internship, but you should also be focusing on simply learning as much as you can.
- be enthusiastic
- take notes
- ask questions (but not too many)
- say yes to everything and demonstrate what you can do
- bring solutions to the table – it doesn’t matter if they don’t work – participate
- take your work seriously
- be a team player
4. Network, Participate and Socialise
Make sure you speak up and join in with things. Don’t spend your internship being the mouse in the corner. If you don’t get to know others… they won’t get to know you. Internships are great fact-finding missions.
- take part in social or sporting events
- don’t have lunch at your desk – lunch with different people and get to know them better
- don’t just mix with the other interns – spend time getting to know the full-time employees too
- Smile (it makes you more approachable)
- introduce yourself and talk to different people to learn more about the company
5. Keep in Touch (and ask for references)
After all the hard work you have put in don’t forget to keep in touch and ask for references. Even if you didn’t get a job or have decided that you don’t want to follow that career path you never know when it might be beneficial.
I was going to discuss how to get an internship this week, however I felt that there is way to much to talk about on this topic and so much I wanted to say. So I decided to discuss How to Find a Summer Internship instead as the first steps in the process are always working out what you want to do and finding the jobs to apply for the first place. So… just follow these quick and easy steps to help you source your perfect job for the summer.
1. Make a “WishList” of companies you want to work for (and don’t forget to include a few backups). List in order of preference.
Lists are a great way of organising your thoughts and getting things down on paper. For this task I use the “Wishlist” Worksheet. At the top is space for a mind dump. Then at the bottom of the page you should list your priorities and then list the jobs in order of preference.
FlashFreebie: My WishList Worksheet
2. Research your WishList Companies
Research the companies and choices you noted during step one. Be thorough. Check what opportunities are available and where there may be a vacancy. Once you have completed the research reassess your list of options. Do you still want to apply? Is the order of priority the same? Do any of them have vacancies listed on their website that you can apply for?
3. Search for job vacancies in places you never though of…
Once you have complete your list (or crossed off places on your list) you should also consider available placements that you might not have discovered (or considered) yet.
- Contacting your university careers service
- Searching for vacancies online – Prospects, Target Jobs and Milkround (to name a few) all offer specific searches for summer placements
- Networking and using your contacts to find out about vacancies
4. Make speculative applications and create your own internship.
Still not found what you want – then the next step is to create your own internship. Dust off and update your C.V and get ready to hit the pavement – literally (or alternatively you could just send a quick speculative application to the relevant HR team or contact within the company).
This month I have decided to take a closer look at Summer Internships (placements) in the run up to summer. This series is aimed at university students or recent graduates who are looking for or are completing a summer internship this summer.
This series will include
- week 1: what is a summer internship?
- week 2: how to get a summer internship
- week 3: how to make the most of your summer internship
- week 4: summer internships and career development
What is a Summer Internship?
A summer internship, placement or vacation scheme is a work placement that takes place during the summer months (June – August). They are aimed at students or recent graduates (although usually anyone can apply).
Placements can be anything from a few days to the full 12 weeks of summer. They can be part-time or full-time hours, they can be paid or voluntary. The reality is… employers structure placements to suit their needs.
A summer internship is different from a summer job. A summer job is usually about earning some extra money but a summer internship or placement is about gaining experience and learning on the job.
Why do a Summer Internship?
It is important to have a good mix of experiences on your C.V. and a summer internship can give your C.V. that something extra. Whether a summer internship is right for you will ultimately depend on:
- the career you wish to pursue;
- the relevant experience you have had to date;
- the gaps on your C.V. that need filling;
- the stage you are at in your life; and
- the opportunities available to you this summer.
If you know the career you wish to pursue and need the opportunity to flesh out your C.V. with some relevant work experience then signing up for a summer internship should be a no brainer.