Archive for April, 2009
It sounds like a college students dream - staying in school for an extra semester, hanging with your friends a few months longer, delaying the real-world just that much more. Unfortunately, with the current economy, students aren’t making the choice to stay in college because they WANT to but rather because they feel they NEED to.
1. Fear. There is no way to escape talk about the state of the economy. Students hear it on television, from their parents, from their friends, from their employers. A sense of fear definitly exists inside students who are already nervous to explore and try their luck in the real world. Staying in school is their safety blanket. They don’t need to worry about the realworld while they’re safe in school.
2. Double Majors. Students are taking on double majors and additional minors to best equip themselves for the outside world. They want to be armed with as much knowledge as possible before trying to make it in the horrible economy they hear so much about.
3. Young people are being encouraged to go back to school. With their peers and/or older siblings who decided not to graduate in the past being urged to return to school it’s difficult for current students to leave. According to Peter Morici, a professor at the University of Maryland, “For young people who were planning to go back to school anyway, the time has arrived. The opportunity cost is much less now.” (quotes in article by Liz Wolgemuth in US NEWS).
4. Online Courses Make Going to School Easy. Online courses have become extremely popular over the past five years. More and more schools are offering online courses to their enrolled students. According to Sloan Consortium, in 2009, over 3,000 colleges are offering at least one online course. This number has increased by over 1,000 colleges since 2003. The number of students enrolled in online courses is also close to 5 million (according to Sloan Consortium).
5. More scholarships. Because of the current economic climate, more schools and private associations are offering current and future students scholarships. The increase of financial aid programs has also helped students stay in school and afford to do so.
6. Students are considering additional degree programs. Fear of the realworld and what’s to come has increased business school enrollments. Professors are actively encouraging students to really consider a graduate degree. The more prepared and educated the student is when they leave college, the better.
I asked my friends on Twitter what they thought:
Please listen in to my radio interview on http://www.mydreambiz.net/ Lauren Milligan, @resumayday, tomorrow at 12pm Central Standard Time. I’ll be discussing how to get an internship and make the most of it !
Thursday, April 30, 2009: 1:30pm EDT
A sought-after speaker on the college circuit, the Intern Queen dispenses valuable how-to’s, resume and cover letter advice, information on hiring trends in a troubled economy and the latest in internship opportunities. Join her as she discusses:
Intern Queen Lauren Berger knows internships! In just 4 years at the University of Central Florida (Orlando), she completed an astounding 15 INTERNSHIPS through a combination of self motivation, innate marketing skills, and a driving determination to succeed.
Now 25, she’s turned those skills into a mission to help college students achieve their own internship goals. She now generates some 20,000 internships monthly with companies the like of SONY, SEVENTEEN MAGAZINE, NASCAR and UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP.
Featuring new listings on her web site as well as through a much followed blog, I Am Intern, Lauren Berger shares her knowledge and wit in a special web-cast just for students; join her, for a lively presentation to be followed by an interactive Q&A session as the Intern Queen presents All Things Internships For Students.
Check out my article on Examiner.com about Adult Internships and how they are increasing in today’s economy.
Lauren Berger, The Intern Queen, has become the “LA Internships and Entry Level Jobs” Examiner for Examiner.com.
According to the website, “Examiner.com is quickly becoming the premier online brand for local information and events, powered by the Examiners, a diverse group of contributors from around the country.”
To visit Lauren Berger’s Examiner.com page click, http://www.examiner.com/x-8143-LA-Internships-and-Entry-Level-Jobs-Examiner
This article talks about the myths and facts about Facebook and how students and recent grads can prevent this social networking site from ruining their jobs or internships. http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-8143-LA-Internships-and-Entry-Level-Jobs-Examiner~y2009m4d16-Facebook-Threatens-Your-Job-Or-Internship
The word INTERN is usually associated with the word UNPAID or FREE LABOR. In this economy, more and more paid internships are becoming unpaid.
It is difficult to find these paid opportunities but not impossible. If you are set on landing a paid internship, follow my advice below
How to Find Paid Internships
1. DON’T GIVE UP. I’m warning you, this can be a long and frustrating path to go down. I encourage students to take on part-time jobs and unpaid internships
to avoid the idea of having to land a paid internship. However, if your mind is set, it is set. The important thing is, when you set your goal of getting a paid opportunity, don’t give up. No matter how many rejections you get, just keep trucking along. Determination and focus are key.
2. EARLY PREP. Paid internships are a dime a dozen these days so don’t procrastinate. Start searching for paid opportunities approx. 6 months before you plan to intern. Finding a paid internship at the last minute is extremely stressful and the paid internships are the first to fill up.
3. NARROW DOWN YOUR SEARCH. Try to choose 2 locations and 2 fields that you would like to intern within. This will keep your lists targeted and aimed at the right opportunities.
4. GET ON THE RESEARCH TRAIN. Become a professional at Microsoft Excel becuase it is going to be your best friend and what keeps you organized and focused during your internship search.
Start researching as soon as you can. Your Excel document should be labeled in columns that read, “Company”, “Website”, “Contact Name”, “Phone Number”, “Status”. Get on Google.com and start typing in the field you want to work in and “Paid Internship”. If you have a destination that you are hooked on, include that as well. I like to use yp.yahoo.com to find company phone numbers online.
If I was looking for a Paid Fashion Internship in Los Angeles I would Google things like “Paid Internships in Los Angeles”, “Paid Fashion Internships”. “Paid fashion internships in Los Angeles” and play around with it until some company names came up. Log the company names you find interesting during your research onto your Excel document. Don’t stop this process until you have at least 20 companies listed. Remember, paid internships are HARD to get so you don’t want to put all of your eggs in one basket. Apply to as many opportunities as possible. Take the time to research the phone numbers for each company as well. Google can be great for this process. I also use yp.yahoo.com and search by company name/location.
5. SEND ‘EM OUT. Don’t wait around to send these materials out. Get together your cover letter, resume, and letters of recc (like you normally would) and put a few hours aside each day to send your materials out. Most companies will accept interns applications via email but there are some that still require regular standard mail. You will also find companies that insist you apply via their website.
6. IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK. If you get offered an internship opportunity and you know it’s not paid, you can ask the employer if they would ever consider creating a small stipend for you. Be frank with these people and explain your situation. Perhaps you are covering your own tuition or your expenses are extremely high that month, be honest and see if they will offer you some sort of payment.
7. MOST INTERNSHIPS WILL COVER SMALL EXPENSES. If you are dealing with major transportation or lunch costs during your internship, don’t be afraid to ask your employer for reimbursement. In most cases, the employer won’t mind. This is a fine question to ask during an interview as well, “Will the company be able to reimburse my parking costs, commute, and/or lunches ?”
8. BE POLITE. Most companies know that they can get interns to work for free so they might NOT be open to a payment conversation. It’s appropriate for you to have that dialouge but if you get turned down, make sure you don’t push it. Don’t make an employer feel uncomfortable and don’t get rude on the phone.
RESOURCES FOR PAID INTERNSHIPS
1. Intern Queen (http://www.quarterlife.com/intern) My site features a handfull of paid internships at companies like BLOBLIVE, THE RUG COMPANY, PORTLAND SEA DOGS, FAMILY TRAVEL FORUM, UNIVERSAL PICTURES, etc.
2. Student Traveler (http://www.studenttraveler.com/mod-Pagesetter-viewpub-tid-10002-pid-566.html). This site lists great paid opportunities and had their listings divided up by fields.
3. The Disney College Program (http://disney.go.com/disneycareers/disneycollegeprogram/) This program is world famous and a great opportunity for dozens of lucky candidates each year.
4. EHow (http://www.ehow.com/how_2048916_find-paid-internship.html) Article on How to Find Paid Internships.
I asked my friends on Twitter about Paid Internships:
Today, I joined my friends from the Extreme Entreprenuer Tour, http://www.extremetour.org/, for their Ashland, KY event. We had about 100 highschool students attend. It was a great event and the students seemed to really love everything myself and the rest of the gang from the tour had to say. Ashland, KY is about 3 hours from Louisville - I’ve now seen my fair share of everything KY has to offer!
The report on the students from Ashland is that they ARE interested in potentially starting their own companies one day. In fact, one of the highschool students already runs her own fashion business (I know, very impressive!). The students seemed to need a bit of a nudge to go out there and get what they want.
Pictures to come soon and the interview I did with the Daily Independent.
xx, Lauren Berger ”The Intern Queen”
I want to thank NewGradHandBook.com for doing a great feature on me for their website. It looks really great and I think the site is going to help lots of people. Here’s to helping college students and grads !
Read the story now at:
Lauren Berger, The Intern Queen, will be speaking at McPherson College in McPherson, KS on Tuesday, April 7th. She will also be on the Wichita CW/CBS morning show on Wednesday, April 8th.