Career Services aids students looking for internships

<p>Career Services displays their advertising campaign at Voorhees Mall on the College Avenue campus. They are offering two career fairs this week.</p>

Career Services displays their advertising campaign at Voorhees Mall on the College Avenue campus. They are offering two career fairs this week.

Melissa Blake said students should not limit themselves when searching for internships or jobs. To encourage students to keep an open mind, Rutgers Career Services tends to focus on the industry of a company as opposed to searching for a job based on students’ majors.

“The key to finding the right internship is not to limit yourself — be creative,” said Blake, assistant director of Public Relations and Marketing for Career Services. “If you’re an accounting major, don’t limit yourself to looking for jobs on Wall Street …  There could be many more options if you focus on industry.”

The University Career Services website displays a number of events for students to attend if they are interested in getting their resume reviewed, checking out potential employers, building networks or learning more about their career options.

Career Services plans to hold a “Career Fair Success Strategies” today at the Gateway Transit Village on Somerset Street. They also plan to offer an internship fair for science, technology, engineering and mathematics Feb. 7 at the Rutgers Student Center on the College Avenue campus and a fair for business, arts and communications Feb. 14 at the RSC.

With the variety of services offered to students, finding what really applies to them may be difficult, but Blake said these opportunities for students are too good to pass up.

“It’s difficult when you’re out there on your own, so it’s important to take advantage of these services now while you’re still students,” she said. “If students are engaged while they’re here, we can really help them get prepared for the real world.”

According to a 2013 post-graduation survey, 85 percent of Rutgers students who had an internship received at least two jobs offers.

A service called “CareerKnight” is one of the most convenient tools offered by Career Services, Blake said.

According to the Career Services website, it enables students to schedule counseling appointments, view internships, schedule interviews, register for workshops and events and develop both resumes and cover letters.

They can also participate in the on-campus interviewing program, where employers interview students at Rutgers as opposed to their offices, according to Career Services’ website.

“It can’t be much more convenient than that,” she said.

These services are free for students, Blake said. Although they give a grace period to students after graduation, the services are not free after students have been out of school for some time.  

Larissa Keller, assistant director for Recruiting Programs, said although students should take advantage of these services before junior and senior year, they could always take the initiative.

“If employers are making themselves available to you and you just show up to a fair or workshop, they’ll know your name and your face, and you’re more than likely who they’re going to think of when an opportunity arises,” she said.

Students can distribute resumes to employers at career fairs or apply online.

Along with this option, students also can apply for the Rutgers Intern and Co-Op Program, which allows them to earn three academic credits over a 12-week duration. In order to apply, students must have a minimum 2.75 GPA and put in at least 180 hours of work in order to get credit, Keller said.

A number of companies offer students co-op programs as well as internships, depending on the major of the student and their interests.

Some companies work with Career Services to create job opportunities for students, such as Hearst Publications, Enterprise and Phillip Morris, Keller said.

To meet with a counselor, students can call and make an appointment or simply use the CareerKnight service on the career services homepage.

Even without an appointment, Career Services offers drop-in resume hours, where in the allotted time professionals can review resumes from students, Keller said.

John Sanchez, a School of Engineering junior, said using CareerKnight taught him the basics of landing an internship that he would not have learned otherwise.

“It was really helpful because it sets up a pretty good foundation of what documents you have to give to potential employers,” he said. “I got an interview from Bechtel Corp. using CareerKnight. They had on-campus interviews and based on my information I provided using the site, I was able to be interviewed.”

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