Employers are showing up at college campuses as early as fall, recruiting not just for full-time entry-level positions but coveted summer internships. And while an internship always enhances any resume, it has also become a serious gateway to receive a job offer post graduation.
University career advisers and employers alike say that regardless of the labor market, finding the right internship still requires effort. Here's what to do:
Start early. While the majority of employers don't start filling internships until January, companies in competitive industries, such as financial services, arrive on campus as early as September or October.
As a result, if you haven't submitted your resume to your university career center, do so now. Even if you have no desire to crunch numbers at a major accounting firm, you'll gain access to all internship postings.
The earlier you visit the career center, the more time you have to get help with drafting a resume and identifying career interests.
Hone your search. The easiest way to find an internship is to go directly to the company's Web site.
If you don't have a specific list of companies, head to your school's career and internship fairs, many of which take place at the start of the year. Also, talk with professors, alumni and upperclassmen for their input.
Finally, look online. Many companies list internship opportunities on the Web, said Randall Hansen, founder and publisher of QuintCareers.com. He recommended the following sites: http://www.collegecentral.com , http://www.internjobs.com and http://www.internweb.com .