For me, my internship was a wonderful and helpful experience which allowed me to gain valuable skills along with the reassurance of knowing I enjoy my chosen career path. At the start of my senior year I began an internship with BrickHouse Books Inc., a small publishing press where I gained experience in different areas of publishing, including writing for social media and editing manuscripts. While I found my internship through my department’s website, I used many resources from the Career Center, such as a resume and cover letter review. After reflecting on my internship experience, I now realize how valuable it was for my career path. Not only do I now know what I want to do, but I also gained experience that makes me more marketable to employers.
There are many ways to begin searching for the perfect internship or job, and lucky for you, a major resource is coming up…the MCC Career Fair Friday, Feb. 7, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Towson Center. This is an amazing opportunity to meet and network with over 130 employers from many different industries and organizations, including the Baltimore Orioles, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Northrop Grumman, Teach for America, and World Relief. To get the scoop on all the organizations attending the fair, check out the directory. There are opportunities for all majors, so don’t miss your chance to hand out your resumes and begin talking with employers about internship and job opportunities.
If you are reading this and start to freak out, don’t worry! Below are a couple of tips to help make sure you are prepared for the fair!
1. Make sure your resume is top-notch! If you haven’t polished up your resume lately, now’s the time to stop by the Career Center. You can make an appointment to meet with an advisor, or come in for a brief consultation during Express Hours (Monday- Thursday, 1-3 p.m.). Take an ample supply of resumes to the fair, and make sure they are perfect! You wouldn’t apply to college without looking over your admissions essay, so don’t apply for a job or internship without first looking over your resume!
2. Dress to impress! First impressions are critical, so ladies and gentleman make sure you dress in a conservative, tailored, well-pressed business suit. This isn’t the time for boat shoes, polos, and tight skirts. How you look will play a big part in determining employer interest, so make sure you are creating the best possible professional image.
3. Practice what you’ll say! Remember, employers won’t be able to talk to you for too long, so what you say in those few minutes really counts! Prepare an interesting summary of your background, achievements, and career interests to make a strong and professional first impression! For some great tips, check out the Preparing for a Career Fair video.
4. Social etiquette! Nothing kills a first impression quite like texting. Make sure your phone is off or on silent. This is your golden opportunity to build your network and land a job; not the time for Twitter and Instagram! Eye contact, a strong handshake, and a professional appearance really make a difference! Additionally, fresh breath is important, but make sure if you are chewing gum to spit it out before meeting employers. Remember, small things make a big difference.
I know searching for a job or internship can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be! If you are prepared and use your resources, it can be a pretty painless process. For more help, visit the Career Center.
Career Peer Advisor