Career development bolsters student competitiveness in internship market

When students think of internships, they generally think of them as a taste of what it would be like to have real jobs in the future. The benefits that come with internship experiences entice students to land one. Who doesn’t want that extra oomph on resumes for future employers to see? It isn’t that easy, though, as competition is rising among job-seeking graduates and other undergraduates seeking those résumé-boosters. Geneseo offers a variety of resources within the Department of Career Development to help students begin their internship search.

The department will hold a jobs and internship fair for all students on March 6. Associate Director for Internship Opportunities Rob DiCarlo said roughly 43 companies already registered.

DiCarlo himself can also help students. He said he is the first staff member dedicated to working with students directly on finding internships.

“I think students realize that employers definitely know that internships are really important attributes,” DiCarlo said. “What is crucial is to start researching as soon as possible.”

Students should also look to KnightJobs, an online database that links students to off-campus opportunities. Within KnightJobs exists another reputable source, an alumni network. The network is an online directory of Geneseo alumni who offer career development assistance. Look for the Career Partners tab under KnightJobs.

Still without luck? Too often students aren’t finding internships because they’re limiting themselves and only applying to opportunities that provide relevant experience to their major or degree.

Although some companies look for specific skill sets in students, most companies look for more personal characteristics.

“When I look for an intern, I look for students that are dependable, creative, hard working, flexible [and] people-oriented,” DiCarlo said. “I don’t worry about GPA and academic qualities; it’s kind of what they bring to the table.”

Now is the time to start searching for internships that will open the door to more opportunities down the road. Start looking with an open mind and a broader skill set.