Roughly 1.5 million US college students fill internships each year. But, in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, these students are in limbo, with some internships being canceled and others left hanging in the balance.
For students once excited about hands-on-training and building their network, this is a nightmare. The once clear path they meticulously planned for their future is veering off track – which, understandingly so, is leading some students to panic.
What many students don’t realize is, they don’t need an internship to help build up their resumes or open the door to a great career. It just takes a little creativity and hard work.
FRANK’s CEO, Charlie Javice, recommends these four proven methods to help build a resume and get noticed.
Build a personal brand
A personal brand is a way to promote yourself by showcasing your unique skill set, values, passions, and goals. The overall goal when creating your personal brand is to distinguish yourself from the rest and show your worth.
When creating your personal brand, take a look at your existing social media accounts, and make sure what you’re sharing aligns with the brand you’re trying to build.
This is an important part of beginning your career and can help you achieve your goals.
Once you’ve mapped everything out, you can promote yourself and your personal brand by starting a blog, creating a website, or redesigning your LinkedIn account to catch the attention of recruiters and hiring managers.
Make sure you include the link in your digital resume!
Create a portfolio
When applying for a job or internship, in addition to submitting a resume and cover letter, it’s a great idea to send along your portfolio.
A portfolio is a great way to showcase all of your best work in one place. It’s a common misconception that portfolios are only for those who wish to work in the visual arts – like photography, graphic design, or artistry of any kind.
But, in all actuality, portfolios can be used for many career interests and don’t have to contain physical images. You can include spreadsheets, workflow processes you’ve designed, or even lesson plans if you’re a teacher.
Take your time, include a picture or two of yourself hard at work. A well-composed portfolio could put you above the other applicants and help you get the career you’ve always dreamed of (or at least get your foot in the door).
Find a mentor
Since we’re currently confined to our homes, this may sound easier said than done. But, you have more resources at your disposal than you think.
LinkedIn has an online mentoring program to help connect you with professionals in your desired field. Facebook also offers online mentorship groups, making it easy to connect with career professionals from the safety of your home.
Have you ever heard the phrase, “It’s not what you know, but who you know”?
You can also reach out to your professors or family friends for mentorship. Their guidance and advice could be an invaluable asset to help you through the application and interview processes.
Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community while also learning valuable life and career lessons to help propel you forward.
Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, and business closures, it may be more difficult to find volunteer opportunities – but they’re out there.
Working with companies like Meals on Wheels, or supporting your local food banks are great ways to help. Keeping social distancing and safety their top priority, programs like these are finding ways to get creative to help those in need.
Another great option is volunteering to help medical professionals. You could help sew medical masks, donate blood, or even donate your money or time to programs that are offering free meal deliveries to hospital staff.
How great would that look on a resume? In a time of crisis, you stepped up and made a difference in your community!
While it may seem like the world is crumbling around you and things may not be going as planned – don’t worry!
Although this might not be the route you had originally planned for yourself, you can still build a stellar resume and land that dream job.