Think you’re too young to start job searching? Think again!
Internships, volunteering, job shadowing — there is no such thing as too early in your education to think about these words. Whether you’re a freshman in high school, a senior in high school or senior in college, these are the experiences you need to help you reach your dream job.
The trend seems to be that most kids don’t intern or do anything hands-on in their field of study until their last two years of college. A main reason may be because most colleges won’t even give you credit for internships until your junior or senior year. Perhaps this is because it is assumed that you do not have enough experience until this time to be of value to the place you’re interning, or just because you may not be prepared maturity wise.
This is something I strongly disagree with for two major reasons.
First, internships, job shadows or volunteering in the field you believe you want to have a career in is the only way to find out if it is really what you want to do. You will learn if it’s actually an environment you want to be in, a schedule you like and if it’s the type of work you expected. If you wait until late in your college career and realize it’s not what you thought it was…it may be too late to switch majors. The sooner you know a career path is not right for you, the better.
Secondly, your out-of-school experiences in the field you want to work in are what you want to focus on your resume when it comes time to apply for a job. Employers are not going to be interested in your GPA or how long you spent working at the local grocery store. Beef up your resume with relevant, timely experiences related to the job you’re applying for. The best way to do that is to gain experience as many times and in as many places as possible before graduating from college. That way, you’ll have tons of quality work experiences to choose from — ones that employers really want to see.
Even if you don’t get credit for an internship through school or any type of paid compensation, the hands-on experience you get outside of the classroom (good or bad) is something that will be of exceptional value later in your career.
For more information about internships, major and career advice, visit NextStepU.com!
By Annalise Cosco. Annalise was born and raised in Fairport, N.Y and attended St. John Fisher College in Rochester, N.Y. She recently moved to Nashville, Tenn., and has a love and passion for writing and is a complete “news junkie.”