Internships are an important way to jumpstart your career, but there’s a lot more you can do to strengthen your resume and set yourself apart from your peers. When evaluating you as a candidate, employers also take into account your extracurriculars and on-campus jobs as well as your leadership and volunteer experience.
If you’re looking to be a well-rounded student in order to land yourself that dream internship or entry-level job, check out how you can make yourself stand out by becoming more involved in campus life this fall.
1. Join Greek life.
Not only are there amazing social aspects of these organizations, there are also opportunities to showcase your dedication to volunteering and giving back to your community. Philanthropy is a big part of most fraternities and sororities, so you will spend your time helping out a cause, which is great in and of itself, and you’ll also demonstrate to employers that you’re passionate about making a difference in others’ lives, which can translate into making a difference within the company.
2. Take on a leadership position.
Whether you’re part of the Math Club or Animal Benefits Club (and by the way, if you’re not in any clubs or organizations, you should join activities that you’re interested in!), run for a position on the executive board. You will learn a lot of skills that are perfect for the workplace, such as leadership, teamwork, planning, etc. Plus, getting more involved with an organization you’re passionate about will enable you to make connections with people who share your interests and hobbies.
3. Apply for an on-campus job.
Because it can be very difficult to work part-time at an internship or other off-campus job for several reasons, like time constraints, lack of transportation and more, working on campus is the perfect solution. You’ll gain experience to add to your resume (and some money for your bank account) without having to make a long commute. There are several offices on campus looking for administrative help, and on many campuses, tutors and tour guides are paid as well, so there is an abundance of options at your feet.
4. Talk to your professors.
Depending on your field of study, you can get involved in a research project with your professor. Several professors look for students to help them experiment in their research labs and publish papers. You’ll have the chance to work closely with a professor who may be able to provide you with a letter of recommendation down the line and career advice along the way, and you’ll be able to add that paper to your portfolio or that research assistant position to the work experience section of your resume. Professors are often overlooked resources that can be extremely helpful in guiding you towards the right career path for you.
There are several attributes and experiences that will look good on your resume, so while internships are extremely beneficial (and we encourage every student to do an internship), remember that there are other components to your resume too. So, if you haven’t had an internship yet or your internship experience wasn’t exactly what you were expecting, getting involved on campus can keep your resume from being just another one in the pile.