Darain Faraz, LinkedIn's Senior Manager in Corporate Communications, gives the following advice on getting an internship:
- Don't be invisible. The first place most recruiters and businesses look for employees and interns is online and if you're not visible, you risk missing out.
- Big up your experience. Remember, your work experience isn't just work you've been paid for or done full time. You'll have gained valuable skills from voluntary positions, part time work, extra-curricular activities or academic projects, so use these as examples to demonstrate your talents.
- Nurture your network. Connect and keep in touch with family, friends and colleagues from university, previous internships or volunteering roles. Even your neighbour could be the link between you and a great work placement.
- Don't go it alone. As well as the university careers department, your student union and other student media will be bursting with career savvy people who have got guidance for finalists in your position.
- Remember: it doesn't happen overnight. Do the best you can with the time you have, but be realistic. You probably won't nab the first internship you come across; don't put undue pressure on yourself at an already stressful time of year and take a “little and often” approach.
Finally, Darain says, “If you're still not sure which area you want to work in, experiment! There's nothing wrong with doing shorter placements to test the water and you'll gain heaps of experience in the process.”