From Wentworth, Tips on Landing a Summer Job or Internship

May 29, 2019

two men sitting at a computer

At Wentworth’s Center for Cooperative Education and Career Development, the job-hunting advice for students keeps coming. Center Director Robbin Beauchamp recently offered WalletHub her considerable knowledge and experience around finding summer and full-time jobs. Below are questions and answers from that conversation. Read the full article here.

  • What tips do you have for a young person searching for a summer job / internship? Start the search early! And, early means in the fall. Most of the highly competitive summer internships are filled by October. Get your resume and cover letters (always include a cover letter, even if the ad asks only for a resume) reviewed by your university's career services office in the spring, one year before you want to do the internship, before your spring semester ends and you leave campus for the summer. Spend the time to research the internship opportunities thoroughly and create [your] amazing job search marketing.
  • What types of summer jobs / internships will best equip young people with the skills and experience they need to secure a full-time career after graduation?  That all depends on what type of job the student wants to do! However, we see many, many employers lamenting the lack of excellent verbal and written communication skills. Get a summer job where you have to speak to people face-to-face and on the phone. Current college students avoid using the telephone and prefer text messaging. This type of communication is not how most businesses operate. College students who know how to write professional emails, speak on the phone using business etiquette and have great interpersonal communication skills will be highly valuable to any employer.
  • What are the most common mistakes young people make when taking a summer job / internship?  The most common mistake is not choosing correctly. Students are busy with full- time studies and don't feel they have the time or capability to conduct a thorough summer job / internship search. So, they may send only a few resumes out or post their resume online and take the first job offered. That job may be the easiest one to get but is probably not the right one for the individual, based on skills, fit, and learning opportunities. Also, students need to be very wary of offers of employment that come too quickly after applying, especially if no interview is offered, where they are required to give money to the employer, often under the guise of "training" or names of family and friends that will be contacted as sales prospects.
  • How can local authorities encourage companies to provide summer jobs / internships for young people? Should government subsidize the cost of summer employment for young people?  In New England, and especially greater-Boston, there are ample [job] opportunities. However, not every area is as fortunate. There are many employers struggling to find skilled labor, especially in manufacturing and technical jobs. If employers are interested in attracting students for summer jobs / internships and then have them stay on post-graduation, the employer should consider providing educational assistance for the intern to continue college or loan assistance post-graduation as an incentive.
  • In evaluating the best cities for summer jobs, what are the top five indicators?  Look what is happening in the city with regards to real estate. Are there new buildings going up, and if so, how many? Where there is a booming economy, there is typically new buildings or rehabbing old buildings. What is it like to live in the city?  How tight is the real estate market? Also, what is the job market/unemployment like. Where there is low unemployment, there is bound to be lots of opportunity. If the student is interested in tourism, then head to where the vacationers head. Cape Cod has struggled for years to find summer help. Look at the industries in the cities. If the student is interested in biomedical work, go to Boston/Cambridge where this work is easily found.

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