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Beyond Internships

How to Make the Most of Your Summer

May 21, 2020 9:52 AM

If your internship or research plans for the summer have changed due to the pandemic, you are probably thinking, what can I do now? Don’t worry, you are not alone! Beyond internships, there are many ways for you to build skills and experience over the summer.

Use this time to become career ready.

  • Build your network. Take advantage of various career events offered by the Career Center such as virtual workshops, webinars and information sessions. Use LinkedIn to find alumni who have career paths of interest and conduct informational interviews. This will allow you to gain insight on how to be successful in this path, what you can do now to prepare, as well as how to build your network.
  • Build your interview skills. You want to be ready to nail that virtual interview. Big Interview is a resource available to you through the Career Center that can be used for learning and practice. This will also ensure that you are comfortable with technology and video/remote interviews.

You may be thinking, how can I gain experience without an internship? This is your opportunity to think about creative ways to use your skills and passion.

  • Develop your passion and interests into an independent project. For example, if you are an English major and enjoy writing, you may want to consider writing a blog about a topic of interest.
  • Consider a micro-internship or professional project for an employer. Parker Dewey is one website where you can find these opportunities.
  • Acquire online certifications that will help you progress in your career. Consider platforms such as LinkedIn Learning.(Don’t forget to be mindful of the costs associated! Some online programs are free, and some are not.)

  • Volunteer remotely with a non-profit within your community.  For example if you are a media and communication studies major, you may offer to lead social media efforts over the summer. If you are a computer science major, you may offer to redo their website. Volunteering will not only be rewarding, but can also help you acquire experience while developing references you can use in the future.

Use this time wisely so that you are ready to shine and hit the ground running as future opportunities become available. Remember, the Career Center is here to assist and support you. You can reach us at internships@umbc.edu.


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