Irish Student University Internship are a great way to test the waters of the working world, get credits for university or even launch a career. Even though you’re only hired for a few months, it’s your time to shine and make sure you become the intern of all interns.
Placement experience can help you make long-lasting career connections, get great recommendations for future positions and teach you a lot about an industry.
Play your cards right, and a work experience placement can be a stepping-stone to being offered your dream job. Government statistics show that 42% of those who undertake work experience placements are offered a job at the end. But what’s the best way to make it into a golden opportunity? From researching the company thoroughly before starting to showing initiative and being prepared to get your hands dirty. HomeHak is going to share with you a few tips that can help ensure that you’re successful in your role at an Irish student university internship.
Make a great impression at an Irish student university internship
Start strong by showing your manager that you’re excited, engaged, and serious. Besides dressing well, you should show up early and stay eager. Ask your boss what he or she would like to see from you.
Ask questions, and carry a notebook
Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and be sure to jot down notes. You’ll not only remember important things, you’ll also signal an important message to your boss. Whenever you’re in a meeting or shadowing someone, always take notes. That way your boss will see that you’re paying attention and are engaged from day one.
Set up coffee meetings with your co-workers
Use coffee breaks as an opportunity to get to know your boss and your co-workers better. Ask them about their experience,. Also, about their vision for the company over the next few months then bring the conversation back to actionable ways that you can make an impact in your position. By reaching out to your team, you’ll be perceived as more likeable and friendly, and that will make you more likely to get hired and promoted. This is also a great way to build up your professional network.
Offer to help on additional projects
Once you know your responsibilities and can complete them well, go the extra mile. Aim to complete a few “nice-to-have” items – terms for projects your boss has mentioned in passing but hasn’t had the time to do. If your boss has said, “Eventually we’ll want to do this…” follow up on it and ask how you can help. This will impress your supervisor. It sends a clear message that you’re serious about your internship.
Don’t leave at night without stopping by your boss’ desk
At 5 p.m. it may be tempting to pack up and go, but stop by your manager’s desk first. Don’t just disappear at the end of the day. Ask your manager if there is anything else they need right now. If you’re asked to complete some small task, do it without rushing through it. Your boss will appreciate that you’re not simply at the internship to get your hours in.
Keep a record of what you accomplish
Write down everything you accomplish at the end of your first week, and every week after that. The simple trick won’t just boost your self-confidence. Having a track record of the ways that you’re contributing to the company as an Irish student university internship will come in handy when you’re ready to ask for a recommendation letter, or if you are thinking about joining the company full-time. With this list of skills you learned and projects you accomplished, you’ll be better prepared to help your manager write a great reference letter for you. You can also vouch for yourself if there’s an opportunity for a full-time role.
At the end of your placement
Send a thank-you note after you finish your placement; it’s usually best to do this via email or post, rather than on social media. This shows courtesy, and will help to ensure that you’re remembered.
Providing your school and workplace allow it, you might want to consider keeping in touch with your employer. Your manager or colleagues may have useful advice or even contacts and opportunities to pass along to you in the future. Before you leave, ask for their preferred method of keeping in touch.
If you don’t enjoy your Irish student university internship, you may decide against keeping in contact or pursuing that career. However, this doesn’t make the experience a waste of time. Every experience in a work environment looks great on a CV, so take some time to reflect. Identify any transferable skills you’ve picked up, and make sure you can illustrate them with specific examples – perhaps you showed that you’re a quick learner by familiarising yourself with a new software package. Be sure to make a note of any acquired skills during or soon after the placement so you don’t forget the details.
For more information on internships in Ireland, check out our other articles: