Set Yourself Apart with Experience
Experience during college may be gained in several ways: internships, work-study, summer and part-time work and involvement in volunteer activities. These programs have some features in common but differ in objectives, in the methods for student involvement, and in eligibility requirements. The advisors at the Student Success Center will help you identify the best option for you based upon your primary objectives for seeking involvement.
- Job-shadowing experiences. This involves following a professional while they are on the job. You observe their activities, have a chance to ask them questions, and see what the various types of work settings are like. Job shadowing is a great way to assess if you have identified the correct career field for yourself, or to assist you in narrowing your focus.
- Work-study allows you to have a part-time job with the needed flexibility to work around your class schedule. You may or may not be able to secure a job in your target field, but this program provides an avenue to develop leadership and problem solving skills with some financial rewards. Not all campus jobs require federal work study. They are called institutional work study, and anyone is eligible.
- Summer jobs are in many areas, providing you the ability to choose something in your major area, or to participate in an experience that will be rewarding for other reasons.
- Volunteering and student organization involvement are great ways to develop and document your skills . Remember though, that joining is not enough, you need to get involved and demonstrate your unique talents and special contributions. Taking on leadership roles is important.
- Internships are work or service experiences usually participated in after you have gained considerable academic preparation. In some departments they are a “capstone experience” in which you have the chance to apply your classroom learning through significant involvement with an employer.