No Summer Internship Yet? It Might Not Be Too Late…

Summer break is about a month away. Have you secured a summer internship yet? While time is quickly running out, there are still opportunities out there. To make sure you gain that crucial career-related experience this summer, it is important to be proactive and flexible.

Last week, we saw 16 new internship opportunities added to HawkQuest. This included internships in conservation, marketing, IT, sales, auditing, and finance. The opportunities are located throughout Wisconsin – including Madison, Waukesha, Mukwonago, and Watertown – and in Minnesota.

A terrific opportunity was added to the Hawk Internship Program. The Wisconsin Innovation Service Center (WISC) on the UW-Whitewater campus is looking to fill 8-10 positions for Product & Market Research interns. The Product & Market Research position provides excellent real-world experience working with business clients in Wisconsin and across the United States. Plus, WISC will moving to Hyland Hall – wouldn’t it be exciting to work in the new building?!

What if none of the aforementioned internships fit your interests? What if you aren’t finding any advertised opportunities in your field? This is where being proactive comes in. Do some research, starting with the city or town where you plan on being for the summer, and discover the businesses and organizations in that community. One resource for doing this is the local Chamber of Commerce. The University Library also supports useful resources, such as LexisNexis Academic. Using LexisNexis, you can build a company list and find company information. Figure out which employers could provide you with the experience you want, then develop a plan for approaching them. Some of the most interesting internships I’ve heard about from students have been self-designed opportunities. It is entirely possible to create your own internship, but it takes careful planning, a fair amount of research, and a measure of assertion. If you think this is a strategy you’d like to employ, schedule an appointment with me.

I’ve heard through the grapevine that summer internships have been slightly down this year, some areas being hit harder than others, and that’s not a huge surprise. Some universities are reporting declines in summer internships in accounting and advertising, while others are reporting positive news for fields such as marketing, human services, and government. People are also talking about a boom in opportunities with small businesses. Small businesses want and need the help, and interns are an affordable means of getting that help. Make sure some small businesses make it into your outreach list.

Next week, I’ll write about what you can do if an “internship” doesn’t happen. Internships aren’t the only way to gain career-related work experience, and it’s a good idea to be flexible in regards to the types of opportunities you’ll consider.

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