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College Tips - Part 1 - Get an Internship

  • I can’t wait to graduate and all, but in this job market, I’m actually starting to savor my student job and check-to-check rent payments.

Posted: 10:39AM February 9th, 2015 | Comments

If you’re an undergraduate at any university or college, get an internship! Anywhere! Even if you’re planning on hopping off to graduate school right after undergrad, you’re going to want that extra recommendation or reference. If there’s one thing I’ve learned: professional experiences and personal connections pay off exponentially in the future, not to mention recommendation letters. And lucky for you, internships are not as daunting as you may think...
When I began my college education, I had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do. Even after taking all the general education requirements at UW-Madison, I still ended up changing my major twice. But I always knew that college is more about preparing a set of skills, rather than choosing a definitive career path that you will follow for the rest of your life. So I didn’t worry. I focused on my strengths, applied for jobs that fit my interests, and slowly found my niche on campus. 
These days I have so many activities and projects on campus that it seems overwhelming. Last semester when I added on an internship, I kept telling myself that I had finally lost my mind. Kapput! But low and behold, an internship at Sustain Dane was the perfect fit for my lifestyle - and student schedule. Furthermore, I believe an internship at Sustain Dane can work for anyone, in any major or program. Here’s why:
Sustain Dane provides:
- the ability to develop and express career interests in a team-building environment.
- Sustain Dane allows for the opportunity to volunteer in the community. Graduate and business schools dig that!
- the information resources to suit a wide variety of interests.
- Last semester, I conducted demographic and economic research using information and resources provided to me by Sustain Dane. I even received three course credits and established a relationship with one of my professors for my work!
- the writing experience to establish your professional personality.
- Many employers will ask for a writing sample or at least appreciate a well-spoken employee. At Sustain Dane, most interns will write about 2 blogs per month. There’s no better time to start working on your professional persona!
- the networks and connections to leverage your efforts into success.
- The operations of Sustain Dane are heavily influenced by networking, so the opportunities are endless! It’s also another great way to job search.
At Sustain Dane, attitude is everything. Every accomplishment is a celebration, but more importantly, a stepping stone. So don’t be daunted. Before I knew what Sustain Dane was all about, I was intimidated about the idea of an internship as well. Now I’m the complete opposite, and firmly believe Sustain Dane can work for you. To learn more about applying for an internship or volunteering with Sustain Dane, contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or visit sustaindane.org.
Andrew Berger is an Applied Environmental Economics major from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has been working with Sustain Dane as an Evaluation Intern for the smART (sustainability+Madison+ART) program since June 2014.

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