For those of you who think it is too late to land a summer job or internship, you most certainly can and should, according to Wittenberg Career Services Director, Wendy Smiseck.
“What I do is scary to people,” Smiseck said. “I don’t want it to be scary; it doesn’t have to be.”
But by the end Smiseck will having you laughing and feeling confident. Use these tips and Career Services resources to help you start the process.
Tip 1: Utilize campus resources. Overcoming the fear associated with job searching is difficult and we have all been there. It is important to remember that you don’t have to navigate internships, resume building or networking alone. Visit Career Services located in Shouvlin 210 to get started. Walk-in hours are Monday and Wednesday 1:30-4:15 p.m. If you’re unable to make these hours, don’t hesitate to call and set up an appointment: (937)-327-7521.
Tip 2: If you aren’t finding any internships or jobs that interest you or are struggling finding work in your area, don’t hesitate to ask businesses if they would be willing to allow you to intern. Some businesses and professions may not explicitly state its employment opportunities, and many small or local businesses are often willing to help with apprenticeship or internships. The worst that could happen is they say no, but chances are they have another connection that could assist you. You never know until you try, so don’t let an opportunity slip by without going for it.
Tip 3: Start the “hunt” by breaking it down into chunks. Dedicate 15 minutes per day to the application process. A lot of people expect jobs and internships to appear easily. But in reality, one of the most time consuming parts of landing a job is searching for opportunities online. Schedule time like you would for homework. Whether you’re searching the job board, writing your resume or networking online, maintain a schedule that will assure success and progress.
Tip 4: Understand that feedback you may get on your resume, experience, etc., is always going to vary. Everyone has different opinions depending on their credentials, opinions and job field. While getting as much feedback from professionals as possible is great, remember that you cannot solely base your resume, priorities and future off of feedback. A great way to use feedback in a positive way is to thoroughly analyze all feedback you get, but tailor it to your personal beliefs, goals and future. Reconfigure your resume and revamp your interviewing skills, but don’t lose yourself in the process – employers still want to see the real you shining through while trying to land a job.
Tip 5: Resume building is a process that requires constant changing and editing. Smiseck says that “the secret to resume writing is just telling them what they need to know. Tailor your resume for that opportunity and prove you can do what they need.” Students often feel like they must thoroughly explain every detail of anything important they have done onto one page, which is just unrealistic. While all the honor societies and internships you have had are important, pick and choose what will stand out and be important to the field you’re applying for. Remember, employers have little time and often hundreds of resumes, so make your skills stand out and use concise bullet points to detail your strengths and experience. Also, don’t be afraid to put your LinkedIn URL on the resume – a LinkedIn is essentially a complete resume that is available for employes to reference in the future.
Tip 6: Networking, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Smiseck says this old saying hasn’t gone away. Amazing internships and jobs are often landed due to who you know. So, if you don’t have those connections yet, it’s okay. The wealth of alumni, especially Wittenberg alumni, is perhaps the best resource college students have. Aside from LinkedIn, Wittenberg has Career Shift and Community apps to help locate alumni and jobs in different fields. To set up free accounts and utilize these resources, go to Career Services. Alumni are very often eager to hire their fellow alumni and help locate jobs through referral as well. Don’t let this invaluable tool go to waste!
Once you network and perfect your resume to get an interview, don’t forget three important rules: Do your research, look the part and be yourself. It doesn’t matter what you’re interviewing for, you have impressed the employer enough on paper, so it is time to be yourself and have an enjoyable conversation. Don’t be so comfortable that you’re off your game and unprepared. You should know the company and history, but you need to be showing how you’re a good fit. Be yourself, try to relax and convince them through your demeanor and personality that you would fit their company well, and you should land the job with ease.