Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Making your last few weeks of your summer experience as impactful as possible

Being that your internship/summer experience is most likely wrapping up soon, if you haven’t done so already, now would be a good time to check in with yourself (and your supervisor), to ensure that you are making your last weeks as impactful as possible.

1. Revisit your goals and communicate with supervisor
Are you on or off target with meeting your goals? If you are on target, be sure to communicate with your supervisor to ensure that final touches are done to his/her liking. If you are off target, have no fear, you can use this time to make adjustments, as appropriate.  

2. Practice final presentations, especially with key decision-makers

If you are in a role where a final presentation is part of your deliverable, be sure to schedule time with your supervisor and other key decision makers to go over your ideas and get their feedback. Ideally, key decision makers would have bought into your ideas prior to the presentation; nothing you say should come as a surprise. It will also make the question and answer segment of your presentation go a lot smoother. 

3. Plan for what should happen with the progress you’ve made once you leave

It is common courtesy to tie up all loose ends prior to leaving a position and organizing information for the next person to pick up where you left off. As much as possible, start thinking about how you want to wrap up your work and what next steps should be taken by the next person. This step will be looked upon favorably by all parties and could even be a deciding factor when evaluating who should get full-time offers. 

4. Be prepared to send thank you notes

We recommend that regardless of your experience, you write a thank you note at the end of your internship/summer experience. This is your opportunity to thank the person and organization for the learning that took place during the time that you were there. Depending on the organization, gift-giving might be part of the culture; be sure to inquire if you are unsure. Similar to planning for after your departure, thank you notes can also be a deciding factor for full-time offers. 

5. Ask for recommendations prior to leaving 

As you are wrapping up your experience, start to think about who you would want to ask to be a reference for you in the future. When you are having final conversations with all of the people who you’ve worked with, it is okay to ask them if you can keep in touch and if they would be willing to be a reference down the line. Assuming that you have had good working relationships, most likely, the answer will be yes. In the event that your experience hasn’t been so positive, try to think or at least one person you could ask to be a reference. If you have more specific questions about this, feel free to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor to discuss. 

Good luck with the rest of your experience and see you in the Fall!


P.s. Recently, I contributed to an article for HerCampus.com entitled “4 Signs You’re Succeeding at Your Internship” where it went into more detail about how well you fit into the company/organization’s culture, how your responsibilities have grown, how you’re being introduced to people, and how your opinion is being valued; I’d encourage you to check it out for more insights.

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