Intern Abroad!

Living and studying abroad is an experience that many students pursue at least once during their time at Elon. But are you aware you can also intern while you are abroad?

In some cases, like the Elon in London program, students are automatically given the opportunity to register for internship credit and placed with a career-related organization for the semester.

In other cases, students have found ways to get a meaningful internship abroad by working with our office. Internships abroad offer a number of advantages to students. Adding international experience to your resume adds a unique element and potential employers will be impressed by your adaptability to a workplace in a different culture. In a society that is increasingly global, international experience will make you a more attractive applicant. By working closely with our office to gain an internship, you will be well on your way.

There are a few key factors to keep in mind as you begin the process to apply abroad. Simply working at any organization is not going to be as helpful as finding a reputable location, where you will gain valuable knowledge pertaining to your career goals and discipline of study. Also, we have a number of alumni who work for international organizations or live abroad who can become a great connection and resource.

Keep in mind that depending on when or how you are travelling, you will need to balance time with your internship course, other classes, travel and simply experiencing the country where you are living. Getting an internship is great, but we want to ensure it enhances your experience abroad.

Finally, contact the Isabella Cannon International Centre, even if you’re going to your native country to complete the study abroad application.There may also be different visa applications and safety concerns so your destination must first be approved.  Then, be prepared to work closely with the School of Communications Internship Office about meeting our internship requirements. Together, we will help you to create a unique study-abroad internship experience.

To get started visit the Isabella Cannon International Centre’s Intern Abroad Resources website and make an appointment with the internship office.

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Can I complete an internship during the academic school year?

Many students come into our office asking this exact question, and the answer is YES!  Many communications students complete an internship during the academic school year, but once again the key is planning.  Before completing an internship during the academic school year, be sure to meet with your adviser and determine when you would have time in your schedule to complete an internship along with your other courses.

Some students choose to take a few classes at Elon and complete an internship for credit locally in Burlington, Greensboro or Raleigh.  Others choose to live at home or in another city while completing an internship during the summer or winter terms.  And occasionally, a student will plan to live in another city and complete an internship while taking the semester off.  In this case, they have planned this well in advance and will still graduate on time.  They also hope the internship will transition into a job.

Another consideration is tuition.  If you enroll for a summer term, then like other academic courses, you must pay for the internship course.  You will only pay additional tuition during other terms if you exceed the allowable credit hours.

To get more information about completing an internship during the academic school year, be sure to talk with your advisor and make an appointment with Mrs. Tonkins to begin your internship search today!

Make an appointment here: http://www.elon.edu/e-web/academics/communications/internships/

The importance of starting your internship search early

Although the idea of starting your search for an internship might be daunting, it is important to begin your search early and continue to search often. Frequently, first and second year students feel that they do not need to enter the internship office until they are a junior or senior; however, this is not the case!

It is important to visit the internship office early in your academic career to research internship opportunities and application requirements.  This way, you can find your dream internship at ELLE magazine or NBC News, for example; and over the next year or so, you can be build your resume and portfolio with experiences and work that will help you land your dream internship.  Strategy is key.

Some big internship opportunities may even request previous internships or campus media experience before applying.  By coming into the internship office early and often to research what opportunities are out there, you can be sure to be thoroughly prepared to land your dream internship once the application deadline arrives!

Make an appointment to come into the internship office and explore your options:  http://www.elon.edu/e-web/academics/communications/internships/

Handling multiple internship offers

If you find yourself having to decide between multiple internship offers, first of all, congratulations!  Next, take a deep breath; you are in an ideal situation where you can pick the position that is going to be best for you!

Whenever you receive an offer, especially if you know you will be hearing back from other companies soon, politely tell the employer you need a few days or a weekend to consider the position.  Employers are used to this.  According to the Elon Career Services website, “It is not advisable to make a decision immediately.  Find out when the organization needs you to respond to the offer. If this employer is your first choice, you may choose to request a day or two before your final decision.  If you have other interviews or offers pending, tactfully request more time.  You may say, for example, “I’m very excited about this position, but this is a big decision and I would like a few days to consider the offer.  May I have until (date) to make a decision?”  However, when you do this, be sure you respond to the employer by the agreed date. Never accept an internship, and then turn it down because another more appealing offer came later.  Companies frown on this, and it may impact you and the university later.

When debating between multiple offers, consider questions recommended by College-Career Builder:  “Is the internship for a company you like?  Can you see yourself working there full time?  Is it doing a job you would enjoy?  What skills will you build by working there?  How do these skills relate to your longer term career plans?”  Also, keep your gut instinct in mind.

After deciding which position will be the best opportunity for you, it is time to accept and decline your offers.  When rejecting a job offer, always keep the door open for future opportunities.   Though Company A may be your first choice now, it is possible that some day you will want to change jobs and may be interested in Company B.  Maintain a good relationship by tactfully turning down the offer from Company B. Graciously thank the person extending the offer, and let them know you are unable to accept their internship.  For example, you may have decided to attend graduate school, accept an offer in your hometown, or take another internship that provides needed income, etc.

Finally, it is time to accept your first-choice offer!  Be excited and professional when accepting the offer.  Although you may accept the offer over the telephone, it is important to follow up in writing and also request that the offer be sent to you in writing as well.  Thank the person extending the offer to you and show your sincere interest in joining their organization!

Again, give yourself a pat on the back for obtaining multiple internship offers- your hard work paid off!

Check out these useful links:

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xge98c_fielding-internship-offers-what-do-i-do-if-i-get-multiple-internship-offersy_lifestyle

http://careernetwork.msu.edu/finding-an-internship/the-final-frontier/managing-multiple-offers

Make the Most of Spring Break—Get that Internship!

Spring break is a great time for you to research, apply and interview for summer internships!

Use this break to look over our previous Hotlists (on the Internship web page) and research the internships you find interesting. Without other schoolwork, spring break is the best opportunity to put the finishing touches on your resume’ and to write the perfect cover letter! Don’t have a LinkedIn account? Get one. Create and personalize your LinkedIn over spring break!

Spring break is also a good time to conduct informational interviews and to shadow professionals to learn more about career options. This also helps to get your foot in the door for future internships.

Already applied to internships and waiting to hear back? Then, FOLLOW UP unless the internship website stressed ‘no phone calls’! That means no contact. Otherwise, let the company know you’re home for spring break and available for an interview. Take advantage of this time off – you will be glad you did!

Check out these articles for more information about using spring break to your advantage:
http://internships.about.com/od/internshiptip1/tp/Career-Exploration-Activities-For-College-Break.htm
http://www.usatodayeducate.com/staging/index.php/blog/how-to-use-spring-break-to-get-an-internship

Where can you go to get help???

Finding an internship is just like finding a job, but thank goodness there are school resources to help you.  If you’re like most students, you are not sure where to begin.

Sometimes we hear: “I don’t have any contacts, I don’t even know what I want to do, and I don’t know anyone in the industry.”

Luckily, we do!  Make the Communications Internship Office your first step in finding an internship.  We have the resources to help you find your dream internship.  Our office has contacts to numerous companies just waiting for YOU.

Our office includes: a database which includes the internship site information from previous Elon Interns, alumni contacts, Hotlists – weekly source of internships, student internship ambassadors who can share their knowledge and experiences with you;  and magazines, pamphlets, flyers, and other materials about current internships.   And most importantly, EXPERIENCE.  We are here to help everyone with the process.

Now keep in mind, we aren’t here to find your internship for you. This experience is going to help in the future when it comes to job searches.  However, we are here to give you names and contacts, answer any and all of your questions, guide you along your path, and work with you to find the perfect internship.

Finding an internship may be  a stressful process, but fortunately you don’t have to do it on your own.

Sign up for an appointment today!
https://www.elon.edu/webservices_1/events/eventtype.aspx?id=4