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Intern Queen: Advice for community college students

Jenna Johnson

Each week the Intern Queen, Lauren Berger, answers questions from college students about landing an internship. Do you have a question? Shoot her an email at lauren@internqueen.com and check back to see if she picked yours.

lauren_berger.jpg***

Hi Lauren,

I'm currently an undergrad at a junior college in the Bay Area (third year). I will be transferring to a four-year institution in the fall, and I'm having a hard time looking for a summer internship.

My major is accounting, so I'm thinking anything business related would be good? I'm also having a difficult time putting together a resume. I don't know how to format it nor do I know how to word my previous work experiences. Although my previous work experiences are not accounting related (mostly retail jobs), should I still put them on my resume?

I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks, Jeff K.

Hi Jeff,

The first tip I would give you is to utilize your career center. If you are at a community college or a large university, you should have a career or student services center that will help you go over your resume, re-work your experience and help you zero in on some wonderful opportunities. After you read this note, please make an appointment to sit down with them ASAP.

If you don't have any relevant experience then, yes, you should list your jobs. Also, think out of the box and list any relevant coursework, achievements or volunteer work that you've done over the years. You want an employer to look at your resume and realize that you've held responsibility in the past and that you can follow a commitment through.

As far as the type of internship you go out for, most companies have an accounting department, which makes for a wide range of choices for you. Make a list of 10 companies where you visualize yourself working in the future. Since you haven't had much experience, these should be local companies and mid-sized employers.

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Hi Lauren,

I just have a quick question, I am from Australia and am thinking about doing an internship once my degree ends (ends in August 2010), but I can't find any information about visas. Do you know if a company will provide a visa for the length of the internship -- and what is the general length of internships?

Thanks heaps in advance! Jo

Hello Jo!

Most companies expect the student to supply all information regarding their visa.  The process of getting a visa can be long and semi-frustrating, but it does work and thousands of students come to the US to intern each year. To obtain more information about the specific visa you would need, visit the State Department's Web site.

Also, keep in mind that Australia does have its own set of internship resources. I've found http://www.internships.au to be a great resource as well.

Best of luck !

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Hi Lauren,

I want to know if you know of any magazines or newspapers in New York City that need any interns this summer. I have a preference to work in a fashion related publication!! I really need help.

Thanks, Sarah, Student at Ateres Bais Yaakov Academy

Hi Sarah!

There are tons and tons of magazine and newspaper internships in New York City for the summer. Some of the more formal internship programs at the New York Times and Wall Street Journal are closed for summer applications, but there are plenty of other publications still looking.

I personally work with a few hundred magazines on my site, http://www.internqueen.com. Another great resource is Ed2010 they have some great web, magazine and newspaper editorial positions on their site.

As far as fashion goes, there are PLENTY of opportunities. Keep an open mind and remember that most magazines do have a fashion section even if fashion isn't their forte. Don't eliminate health or fitness magazines and women's publications as they will all have fashion sections and fashion editorial within their pages. Good luck!

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About Lauren Berger
Lauren earned the title "Intern Queen" by completing 15 internships during her four years of college at the University of Central Florida. After graduating in 2006, she decided to turn her experience interning into a career and launched Intern Queen Inc. Lauren travels the country to talk to students, runs an internship listing site, blogs and was just named one of BusinessWeek's Top 25 Entrepreneurs 25 and Under in 2009. Lauren can be reached at lauren@internqueen.com.

By Jenna Johnson  |  March 10, 2010; 2:36 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. Interns  | Tags: Intern Queen, Internships  
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