July 5, 2022, by Leonie Farrar
Internships: Search, Apply, Interview, Success!
By Leonie Farrar, religion, philosophy, and ethics student blogger
Over the last eight weeks I have gone through the process of finding, applying, interviewing, and securing a summer internship. Read on for my step-by-step experience:
In April I was nearing the end of my degree and wanted to start preparing my next step. This next step was to find a job or internship, preferably in digital marketing or a similar industry. I looked through many job search websites. Most of the jobs advertised were looking for someone with specific digital marketing experience. As a new graduate who didn’t do a digital marketing degree, I didn’t feel that I met this criteria.
I decided I needed to look at jobs specifically for new graduates. This is when I looked at the opportunities listed on MyCareer and found the Nottingham Internship Scheme. There were many different roles and companies offering interesting summer internships through the scheme. However, as I was working on multiple essays and my dissertation, I didn’t have time to create good applications for all of the internships I was interested in. So I focused my time on creating the best applications I could for my top three internships.
Applying for the internships involved filling out an online application form. Most of this form was relatively straight forward with questions about availability and uploading my CV. However, the main questions required a longer and more detailed response.
The first was around why I had chosen the particular role. I focused my answers on what caught my interest in the job description. For example, learning to use new software. I did some research into each company and wrote a couple of sentences about what I like about the business and why I would want to work for them.
The second main question was around how my skills and strengths would make me a suitable candidate for this role. I answered this question by looking at what skills and experience were mentioned in the job description and explaining how my skills and previous experience matched the job description.
Finally, the third main question was based on my knowledge of challenges currently facing organisations in the sector. I thought about current issues in the world, looked at recent news, and thought about how these issues would impact the company and sector I was applying for. I decided on the biggest issue and thought about solutions that the company could use to overcome it.
I was offered and attended two interviews. The first of these interviews was for a digital communications internship. This was done online through a video call and lasted around 10-15 minutes. I was sent the interview questions before the interview so that I had time to prepare my answers. This gave me time to really think about what I was going to say and make some notes. I was unsuccessful with this internship but received useful feedback that I will be able to use to improve my interview technique in the future.
My second interview was for a junior copywriter internship. This interview was in person and lasted around 30 minutes. The first 10 minutes involved interview questions about myself and why I was interested in the internship. The final 20 minutes involved writing a description to sell a product. Although I was nervous, I enjoyed this aspect of the interview as it allowed me to show my creative side and get a feel for what I would be doing. Fortunately I was successful in this interview and have accepted the role as a junior copywriter intern.
Success and the future
Starting any new job is nerve-wracking and will involve a quick learning curve. However I am really looking forward to this new opportunity, getting into the world of work, developing my knowledge and skills, and working within a team.
Internships are a great way to gain experience and learn on the job. Take your next step and search for jobs and internships.
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