Tips and tricks to start your internship journey

Last summer, Tim Schluth ’24 was looking for a summer job. Looking for an opportunity, Schluth found it was in his back pocket: a flyer he received in December 2021 from a counselor listing a nonprofit internship opportunity. He was looking to earn some money before going abroad, but it was better if his job matched his interest in politics. In the end, he felt like he really got lucky.

“The nonprofit I worked with was based in Baltimore and called Break a Difference. They did a lot of work coordinating immersions and service projects for youth and corporate employees” , Schluth said.

Opportunities vary, but starting as early as possible is something Schluth suggests based on her own internship experiences.

“Not that it’s always easy, but I would advise people to start looking early and really try to find a paid internship if possible. We’re young and maybe not the most experienced, but our work is worth something and we’ll be much happier with employers who recognize that,” Schluth said.

He encourages students to consider that internships do not happen overnight. Creating resumes and organizing cover letters takes time and attention to detail. For some, however, finding internships can be daunting and stressful.

Rizzo Career Center employee Braya Markley ’23 said: “I think internships are really intimidating. I think students often don’t know where to start. Reach out, go during office hours, go see your professors, really get to know them.

Students frequently use online platforms such as LinkedIn and Glassdoor to find internships as well as part-time to full-time jobs. However, not all internships are found this way. Eileen Hiebler, Director of Partnerships and Recruitment, believes that how a student represents themselves through their application, resume, cover letter and other required documents can potentially limit or expand opportunities.

“We always say that the job description is like a secret code. So the job description is very specific to the role itself,” Hiebler said. “And, we absolutely recommend a one-page resume so you can take things out when you go to other companies so you align the resume and your document again with what they’re looking for.”

Located in the Rizzo Career Center, the Fernandez Center helps students find a variety of academic resources available to us, such as professional staff members and the online recruitment platform called Handshake.

“We offer individual coaching appointments where students can come and meet one of our team members and go through the whole research process. Any roles that Loyola is contacted for, for our students for internships that companies want to post, all move to Handshake,” Hiebler said.

Handshake is a hiring platform, similar to resources like LinkedIn and Glassdoor, that advertises internships and jobs. The difference between Handshake and these alternative programs is that Handshake primarily caters to students, offering them a wide variety of internship opportunities to apply for.

“The beauty of Handshake is that it’s designed for the college population. So, in other words, there shouldn’t be roles that require 10 years of experience. For example, these are roles that are more entry level or higher, again built for the college population.

For more information on internships and services offered by the Rizzo Career Center, Click here.

Featured image courtesy of Bridget Botelho.

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