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Internship done. Now What

By 2015-12-22 GAC

Often, young individuals simply talk of how an internship was a “great” experience and keep on with their studies or their job searches. But how can they make sure to fully utilize that internship experience to prepare for new employment? For those who took a placement outside of their own country, returning back home will surely present itself with a set of unexpected culture shock, despite being in one’s own home country. But exactly how does one start to incorporate all they learnt during an internship placement to fit in with their usual routine once the experience is over?

Based in part from some personal experience, below I have shared some basic, (although general) guidelines that may be useful to somebody finding themselves stuck after doing an internship.

1.    Update your Resume

Arguably one of the very first things that one needs to do is to upgrade your resume based on the recent experience that you have had. Do this when your role and job descriptions are still fresh in memory, and even better; see if your supervisor is willing to help you define some of the roles you had been tasked with.

2.    Take time to reflect on your work experience

You need to set aside some time to think about all that you have learnt and gained from your internship experience. Ask yourself the tough questions whether the internship has really served as a one step closer to the career path you would like to follow, or has the experience actually opened up your mind to something much better or completely taken you in a different direction? Either way, you must be open to the fact that you might need to re-structure or adjust your original career plan.

3.    Make your experience speak for you

You need to think about how you are going to use the skills and new knowledge that you gained to work for you – of course the most obvious way is by making a record on your cv, other creative ways might be to share it on social media platforms; you might want to start a blog, if you are artistically inclined organize showings of your work, join existing forums, get your material published etc; the idea is to form your own new networks and get connected more. Your career will not be completely built by doing things on your own; the idea is to get involved way better than you were before your work experience. You can begin to get involved in activities that gravitate towards your career goals.

4.    Ask for Feedback

Immediately after you finish your internship, it is important to ask for a performance report from your supervisor (hopefully he/she can be as honest as possible) and look at any criticism as a step towards bettering yourself. Try to part on good terms with your internship boss in case of future contact, such as needing a recommendation for your next job hunt. You can be vocal about your career hopes so that in case they have an opening, they might just call you back.

Many of us are aware that before taking up full time employment, doing an internship has become imperative in today’s job market, the competition out there more and more requires one to back up a good education background with on the field experience.

I sign off with a thought that how fully you can explore the advantages that your internship has brought correlate with how further and richer you can make your career become.


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