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5 ways to stay ahead of the curve for internship, job season

For many students, internship and job season is a terrifying time of the year. Slowly beginning in the early months of winter and ending in the spring, it can be challenging to stay ahead and put your best foot forward when it comes to applying for that opportunity you really want.

However, by being prepared and proactive, there are many ways you can secure an internship or job. Here are five ways to stay ahead of the curve for this current internship and job season:

Update your resume as soon as possible

Most internship and job applications require you to submit or upload a resume during the application process, and you do not want to use one from the last year. Your resume should be updated on a monthly basis, as this ensures you won’t forget to list any past or present opportunities, awards or experiences you’ve acquired. You also should make your resume meet the requirements, as some companies prefer resumes in certain layouts, colors and fonts.

An updated resume saves so much time in the application process. By having one that is easy to access on your phone or computer, you can also know where it is at all times, preventing you from having to make a new one all over again.

Use career resources on campus

Luckily, Ohio University has a multitude of career-based resources for all majors on campus, with staff that can help you find specific internships or job opportunities. These resources can also help look over your resumes, cover letters or CVs, as well as provide advice on what career path to go down. You can even practice your interviewing skills by participating in mock interviews, which can greatly strengthen your application.

OU provides Career Services, which has many links to specific areas you may want to focus on during this time of year, including Career Coaching, Experiential Learning, Handshake and more. You can schedule appointments online here.

Constantly check career websites

If you’re nervous about missing out on an opportunity, make an account on career websites like Handshake, LinkedIn or Indeed. These websites can be tailored to your specific career interests, matching you with positions that may be what you need to graduate. You can also search for internships on these sites and directly reach out to hiring employers.

It’s a good idea to look up the companies you want to work for via a quick Google search. Doing this regularly lets you see if companies have posted new open positions.

Ask for help from professors or advisers

Asking for help may seem intimidating, but it’s important to reach out and get the help you need when it comes to the opportunity you want. By scheduling an appointment with your professor or adviser, meeting with one of them may help you navigate your search for the internship or job you want. 

These individuals can also serve as references for your resume application, which can be crucial to the process. You always want to ask for permission for references before filling out an application, so establishing consent during your meeting will also save time and energy when filling out applications.

Apply, apply, apply

Even if you don’t think you’ll get through the first round of the application process, always apply for an internship or job that interests you. It’s all about having the confidence and willingness to learn, and employers will appreciate the effort you put forward.

It also teaches you an important lesson about how to accept rejection, which is more common than it seems in the professional world. Overall, apply to opportunities that may be out of reach. You never know what will happen. Take the risk, and you may get the opportunity you’ve been searching for.


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