Archive for March, 2009
We renamed the Blog link the Advice link because within the next few weeks, internSHARE will start posting featured advice articles from a variety of industry experts. These articles include tips on finding internships, tips for making the most out of your internship, and more. internSHARE is focusing on international growth, we have reviews from almost every continent, so our featured authours will be from all over the world. We hope this provides insight and perspective that you find useful and eye-opening.
President of internSHARE
We are excited to announce that Coop Rankings (formerly http://www.cooprankings.com) is now part of internSHARE. Coop Rankings was a very popular website started at the University of Waterloo. They had great success, bringing in thousands of users and thousands of reviews to their site. internSHARE’s great interface and recent popularity combined with Coop Rankings established success is a winning combination.
We are even more excited to bring Kevin and Tommy from Coop Rankings to the internSHARE team, so now you have six great minds trying to come up with ways to help you find the right internship or co-op placement.
Enjoy! And if you have any comments or technical troubles since the merge, let us know!
24 03 2009
Attention Employers ! This blog is written just for you. I get hundreds of employers contacting me each week and asking if they can start an internship program. The answer is, YES ! I put together a few tips for companies trying to launch internship programs.
How to Launch An Internship Program
- PICK AN INTERNSHIP COORDINATOR. If your company is big or small you should have one person that is in charge of your internship program. I would suggest giving this responsibility to some sort of assistant or junior level position. If your receptionist or office secretary is a high turn-over job, give this responsibility to someone more permanent. This person will be in charge of collecting resumes, promoting the position, sorting resumes, coordinating interviews, and providing work and space for the interns.
- OUTLINE YOUR PROGRAM. Ask yourself and other employees what you want to accomplish by starting an internship program. Create a mission statement. An example could be “The Intern Queen Internship Program provides students with a hands-on experience. I show them how a start-up is run, the daily tasks that go into managing a business, and have them help out with brainstorming, necessary organizational and administrative tasks, social media, press releases, and marketing campaigns while taking their future interests into consideration and providing each student with a personal mentor and guide throughout the duration of their internship.”
- MAKE EACH TASK BENEFICIAL FOR BOTH PARTIES. I suggest each company make a list of the types of tasks that interns should be asked. Before making this list, think about the “double-sided benefit” of each task. Each task delegated to an intern should serve two purposes: 1. The task should be of assistance/benefit to the employer. 2. The tasks should be of benefit for the intern to learn how to do. They should be able to find this useful in some manner for their future.
- ACCEPTABLE TASKS. Employers must assume that most interns come into the workplace with little to no prior experience. Therefore, any filing, copying, phone answering, database sorting, cold calling, pitching, sitting in on meetings, faxing, typing up reports are all acceptable tasks for intern. Internships have a bad reputation of being all about making coffee and running personal errands. Every once in a while, a personal errand or a coffee is necessary to make something in the company run smoothly. For the sake of your companies internship program and for the sake of the intern, try to keep the personal errands and coffee runs to a minimum. Interns are definitely a convenience in the office but try to assign them to tasks that are mutually beneficial. Having an outlined list of company “acceptable intern tasks” will help make sure that all employees understand what they can and cannot ask of their interns.
- OFFER SCHOOL CREDIT.Many internships are unpaid and that is the nature of the word. Unpaid internships are fine as long as College Credit is offered. The big misconception about college credit is that the company needs to do something about it. College Credit actually lies in the hands of the student and their specific career center. Before interviewing a student, ask them via email if they can receive some sort of college credit or transcript recognition for their internship. The student will have to ok it with their career center at school and then will provide you with an answer. I encourage to you make sure student’s can get some sort of credit/recognition before you interview them. Once the school tells the student that they are able to receive college credit for the internship, the student will bring in papers for the company to sign. Depending on the school, the papers might consists of a company summary, biweekly evaluations for the employer or student to fill out, and usually some sort of “end of internship” evaluation for the employer to sign. This is the school’s way of keeping track of the student and making sure they are attending their internship. Companies should advertise that they are providing college credit for students interning at the company.
- KNOW YOUR INTERN’S GOALS AND STRENGTHS.During the interview process, make sure your internship coordinator asks the student’s if they have any work-related knowledge of the internet, programs, social media networks, etc. Many students have already incorporated different social media sites into their lives. They can easily bring this knowledge and use it as an asset to your company. Many companies rely on interns to run their social media campaigns and profiles. It’s also important to know where your interns want to go. If they are really interested in PR, put them in your press department. If a student tells me they want fashion, I give them all fashion related clients and projects to work on.
- SELECT YOUR DATES - BE SPECIFIC.To keep your company organized, and your internship program in control, set some company internship dates. I always have the internship coordinators I work with set up 3 folders in their inbox: Fall Resumes (to be looked at July 15th), Spring Resumes (to be looked at October 15th), and Summer Resumes (to be looked at March 1st - 15th). They can properly file each resume into the corresponding folder until those dates. This is so they don’t get caught up looking at resumes all day long. I suggest running Fall Internships from September 15th - December 1st, Spring Internships from January 15th - April 1st, and Summer Internships from June 1st - August 1st. These are approximations of course. I suggest always bringing interns in on a Tuesday or Wednesday for the first time, never a Monday. Things in the office tend to get crazy and the interns get ignored on Mondays.
- BLOCK SCHEDULE YOUR INTERVIEWS. Have your internship coordinator block out 2 hours in one day to schedule a few different internship phone interviews. I always encourage people to do phone interviews first. For the summer, phone interviews are often times the only interview because many students are traveling to the locations for the summer. Phone interviews can tell you if you can really communicate with the intern. If they cannot hold a phone conversation, that is not a good sign - don’t waste your time bringing them in for as in-person interview.
I’ll be sure to write some more notes on these sorts of topics in the future. I know I get requests for information all of the time. If companies want to post internships on my site, http://www.quarterlife.com/intern simply email me firstname.lastname@example.org and put POST AN INTERNSHIP in the subject line. I’ll email you back with the forms to fill out. It costs $35.00 to post with me. You can add/change/remove/edit your listing whenever you’d like.
I asked my friends on Twitter for ideas on Starting An Internship Program:
Helpful Links on Starting an Internship Program
UCR Career Center Blog: http://careers.ucr.edu/employers/startinternships.htm
Washcoll on Starting and Maintaining an Internship Program: http://internships.washcoll.edu/pdf/academicinternships_startingprogram.pdf
InternWeb on Designing an Internship Program: http://www.internweb.com/empres.asp
23 03 2009
The number one excuse I hear from students on why they cannot intern is, “I have to work over the summer. I can’t intern for no pay.” Ladies and Gentleman, I have exciting news ! It IS possible to have both a summer internship and a summer job. With the proper time management skills, you can have the best of both worlds. Income is top priority but internships are extremely important as well. With the job market in the state that it is, internships are a way to ensure that you are properly prepared to get out there in the real world.
INTERN QUEEN STORY: The summer between my Sophmore and Junior Year of college, I interned in Los Angeles. I interned Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 9AM – 3PM at BWR Public Relations – a high-profile celebrity Public Relations Firm. I interned on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10AM – 4PM at Warren Cowan Public Relations – a boutique Publicity Firm. I worked at Islands (Fine Burger Joint) Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 5:30PM – 11PM and Sunday mornings from 10AM – 2PM. Anything is possible. Pick your schedule and then go make it happen.
Ways to Manage Your Job AND Your Internship
· KNOW YOUR NEEDS. Make a list of what you NEED to do over the summer. If you need to make a certain amount of money, write that down. Also, tally up the amount of hours each day you must work in order to make that kind of money.
· WORK AT NIGHT. If you don’t have a summer job yet I suggest looking for a “night” job like waiting tables. If you can find a job that doesn’t require you to be there until 5 or 6PM that is ideal.
· MAKE YOUR HOURS. Look at your schedule and figure out which hours you can realistically devote to an internship. If you wait tables every night from 5PM -11PM, you could be available to intern 5 days per week from 8 or 9AM until 3 or 4PM. If you have a job that requires you to work during the day, try to block schedule. Perhaps you can work 3 days per week from 9AM – 6PM and then intern 2 days per week from 9AM – 6PM.
· INTERNSHIPS CAN BE FLEXIBLE. Most companies will be flexible and will understand that you need to work and support yourself. Most of my summer internships only required me to be there 2-3 days per week. Be honest and explain your situation clearly.
· MANAGE YOUR EMPLOYER’S EXPECTATIONS. With both your employer and you internship coordinator be very specific with them about your time commitments. Don’t say that you might be able to stay past 4PM some days at your internship if you must be at work at 5PM. Don’t over commit yourself. Decide which hours you 100 percent can commit and tell those hours to your boss.
· BE PUNCTUAL AND ALERT. Since you will be splitting your time, it’s important to be extremely punctual. You want to show both employer’s that you can juggle two things at once and it won’t cause you to be late, procrastinate, etc. If you are tired, hide it! Make sure that you are bright eyed at your internship and at your job. Both places won’t want someone that seems to be “dragging”.
· BE PREPARED. If you know you have to go from one place to another quickly – be organized. I’m really big on Snack Bars (granola bars or fruit bars) or packing a sandwich to eat during your in-between time. Also, make sure you pack a bag with whatever change of clothes you will need, any information you need to bring, water bottle, snacks, etc.
· SHOW THAT YOU CAN HANDLE IT. If you excel at both places that means double the letters of recommendation, double the experience, double the number of items to add to your resume. Your parents, employers, co-workers, fellow interns will all be impressed.
Tips From Time Management Coach, Elizabeth Saunders (http://www.realLifeE.com)
“The key to balancing a job and internship over the summer is to find complementary matches. For instance, if you’re passionate about interior design and want to intern at an architecture firm during the day, seek out a job that values people working nights and weekends (such as a restaurant). On the other hand, if you dream of being on the nightly news and want to intern at a TV station, look at jobs like doing administrative work during the day at a temp agency.
By finding complementary positions, you can avoid conflicts and stress over scheduling everything in–you’re happy and you’re manager is happy.”
I asked my friends on Twitter what they thought about managing a summer job and a summer internship:
Sarah_Bella@InternQueen Usually internships only require 20-30 hours so that leaves weeknights & weekends to make that money! Stinks not having a life but the internship experience is totally worth it!! What you sow so shall you reap!
jjaime@InternQueen The day has 24 hours…it’s all about what the job is about and that it is on a different time than the internship. For example: Internship from 9 to 4 and job from 6 to 10. Considering a part time job. http://jjaime.tumblr.com/
*FOR MORE INTERNSHIP INFO VISIT http://www.quarterlife.com/intern