There is one critical qualification that is missing from most university graduates resumes: relevant work experience. Now it may seem obvious that you wouldn’t have any experience because you have spent the last several years studying and earning a degree so that you can qualify for an entry-level position. But employers don’t always think that way, and naturally, they will always give preference to someone who has even limited experience over someone with no experience at all.
How do you get relevant work experience while you’re still in school?
Paid internships are the perfect solution to the relevant work experience requirement. Not only are you getting hands-on experience, but you are also being paid to do it. That in itself raises the value of the experience from an employers standpoint in that someone was willing to pay you for the work that you did. It’s a validator of sorts.
Ideally, a paid internship will take place during one or more semesters of your senior year, or during your summer break. This will happen at a time when your school training is at its peak, and you are just about to enter the workforce on a full-time basis. Often, this type of internship even leads to a job offer upon graduation.
The downside of paid internships is that they are not easy to get. Few employers are willing to pay novices for what are the equivalent of temporary training arrangements. But since the payoff for paid internships is so great, you should always make your best effort to line one up. Continue Reading →