Getting a Summer Job or Internship as a University Student

Working over the summer break is a fantastic way to build up both your experience in the workplace and your bank balance. But how do you go about getting a job or internship? In the ever-competitive world of student jobs, it’s important to be prepared and do your research. Let us help get you started with some handy tips.

Young Woman Serving Coffee

Jobs

A part- or full-time summer job looks great on your CV, and you’ll have plenty of options to choose from. Here are some things that you should keep in mind when applying:

  • Update your CV: make sure to include all of your most recent experience, and highlight your most impressive achievements. It’s always best to be truthful, and tailor your CV to each job you apply for. If you’re not sure how to present it, take a look at some templates.
  • Research online: there’s an endless number of websites aimed at students trying to find a summer job. Some of the best ones include Indeed, Student Job and E4S. Don’t be afraid to use filters and be picky!
  • Visit people in person: employers in industries like retail may still advertise in shop windows, so enquiring about positions and handing in your CV personally could be both convenient and help you make an impression.
  • The world is your oyster: you won’t be limited to just a few industries with student jobs. Retail stores – including supermarkets – are a reliable option, but positions at festivals, summer camps, and tourist attractions such as theme parks and zoos are also out there.
  • Freelancing: if you can’t find a job that fits your criteria, create one that fits around you! You could freelance in pet sitting, childcare or tutoring, for example.
  • Venture abroad: if you’re feeling adventurous, why not look into working abroad? You might want to teach English, join a well-known American summer camp, or even au pair in Europe.
  • Volunteering: you won’t get paid, but volunteering is a wonderful way to add experience to your CV while helping a worthy cause. Charity work could include helping out in a shop, organising events, or managing social media.

Internships

Want some more hands-on industry experience? Then an internship might be just what you’re after. Some tips to remember are:

  • Talk to your university careers service: you could receive invaluable advice in person about companies to approach, or you might find listings on your university’s website.
  • Online research is key: you often need to go directly to company websites to find information on internships, but there are also adverts on Milkround, Prospects and TARGETjobs.
  • Be prepared: check out the best way to write cover letters and tailor them to each internship and job description. Research into the companies themselves won’t go amiss, and if you feature it tactfully in your cover letters, it shows your initiative.
  • Face the competition: internships are competitive, so make sure that you give yourself the best chance you can, and apply for multiple positions. And then a few more…

Not looking for such a large commitment but still want a taste of a career path? Why not apply for work experience instead? Some placements only last a couple of weeks or months, so you can still make the most of your summer break.

Interviews

No matter what kind of position you’re applying for, you’ll likely come across an interview or two. Arm yourself with knowledge of the job and company, write a list of questions to ask, and have scenario examples and answers for how you fit the job description ready to go. It’s important to dress appropriately – and, if you’re nervous, try practising with some common interview questions!

Social Media

In the digital age, it’s impossible to escape from social media. While it’s a valuable tool for finding and applying for jobs, as well as networking – through LinkedIn and Twitter, for example – remember that potential employers might want to turn their research on you! Don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want your boss to see, and instead be active, show your interests, and share content related to the industry that you want to work in. Depending on your career path, you might want to create an online portfolio too.

Young man celebrating with laptop

Searching for jobs and internships can be stressful, but our student shipping and storage service is a breeze! We can ship your belongings to university and back again, or store them safely at our facility until you need them – ideal if you’re relocating for your summer job. Contact us today to discover how we can help make your life easier.