Finding a Summer Job or Internship in College
May 10, 2023
By: Organization for Autism Research
Categories: Career and Money, College, Employment, Self-Advocates
Maybe you’re looking for experience in your desired career field. Or maybe your parents said it’s time for you to pay for some things on your own. Or maybe you just want to make some money over the summer to open a savings account. Whatever the reason, searching for a job or internship can be intimidating.
Whether you’re looking for a seasonal job or internship this summer, OAR has some tips for finding the work opportunity that’s best for you.
See if your school has a student employment office, or something similar. For internships, visit your department and see if they have an internship coordinator who can assist you in finding an internship to meet your needs. Oftentimes both of these campus resources will also provide advice for your resume and interview preparation.
Check to see if your school has a website to help students find on-campus jobs, internships, and post-grad jobs. For example, many universities have an online resource called Handshake that allows you to create a profile, search for jobs, find out about career fairs on campus, and more. Your school may offer something similar.
If you plan to stay on campus or in your college town over the summer, keep an eye on bulletin boards on and off campus (like lecture halls, the library, community spaces, etc.). These will typically have information about part-time employment opportunities on campus or in the surrounding area.
Ask at restaurants, stores, and other businesses you like or frequent. Even if they don’t have a “help wanted” sign in the window, they may be looking to hire. Ask to speak to the manager to show you’re interested and ambitious. Even if you’re not able to speak to anyone in person, you can ask for contact information to follow-up with them by phone or email.
Network with peers and professors and ask them to let you know when they hear about new positions. It’s a good idea to let them know the kind of position you’re looking for so they can recommend something that’s best for you.
Overall, you’ll have to put in a lot of work to find a job or internship position. But once you do, the opportunities for you are limitless. Besides earning money or class credit, you can gain teamwork skills, learn how to build a strong work ethic, and hopefully improve upon career-specific skills in your chosen field.
This post was adapted from Finding Your Way: A College Guide for Students on the Spectrum. Click here to order or download the guide.