Every tertiary student in Singapore should get at least an internship before they graduate and it’s really not about fulfilling your academic unit requirements in order to graduate or letting employers exploit you as free labour to just do tasks nobody else in the company wishes to do.
-credits to archcareers.blogspot.com-
As a fresh graduate, there is nothing substantial for your potential employers to gauge if you’re worth the ‘hassle’ of hiring and training. Well, face it. As fresh graduates you’re more of a liability than an asset in (at least) the first few months of your employment, so all the more the employers would want to see as much Singapore internshipexperiences on your CV as possible, as compared to the numbers of As and Bs stated in your degree audit.
-credits to medhatter.sg-
And so, here are my five humble tips in making the best out of your internship Singapore!
1. Clean up your resume and tailor your cover letter
-credits to oilguru.org-
Yes, it’s just a 3 months internship, but you wouldn’t gain anything if you didn’t even land yourself the position of an intern, right?
Always remember to keep your CV short and sweet, bringing your potential employer straight to the point that you wishes for them to focus on, be it how well you’ve aced the structures module (and you’re applying to a structural designing firm) or how you’ve managed to lead your CCA club to kickstart the annual event with a resounding bang, just make sure you’re selling yourself in the correct direction to which the company is looking for.
Likewise for your cover letter. Do not ever skip the cover letter as it’s the first thing that the hiring manager will look at while going through your application. A well written cover letter, tailored to the actual jobscope, leaves a good impression and heighten your chances of getting the internship while one laced with grammatical and spelling errors might send your resume directly into the bin.
2. Don’t get tunnel vision when applying – It’s all about the experiences.
-credits to thebounceblog.com-
Aim for the big names as it adds more wow factor to your CV when you apply for your first permanent job?
Sorry to burst your bubble, but it doesn’t always go this way. Employers are smarter than that now and I’ve heard enough from my own potential employers themselves during interviews, saying that one actually learns more in smaller (one man does all) firms.
It’s really what you did during the internship that matters, not the company name you went under for that few months.
3. Don’t expect to get an internship from your dream company, always.
-credits to themusingsofthebigredcar.com-
Don’t let the replies of rejections (or worse, no replies at all) get you down. You really do not need to intern at that big company, just because they’re well known for good employee welfare and amazingly comfortable office.
Let me regurgitate the fact now, it’s all about the experiences gained while you’re there. And to a certain extent, just for internships itself, focusing on quantity might really do you some good too, for not every firms treat their interns the same way. You might end up learning zero here, and gain a hundred at your next internship programme, who knows!
4. Bring Your "A" Game to the Interview
-credits to abilotyprofessional.com-
It’s an interview for an internship, but you still got to fight hard for it. Be sure to turn up on time (or rather, slightly early), dressed formally, and well prepared for a good ‘chit-chat’ session with the hiring manager. Other than a possible discussion of your grades (I was once asked why I didn’t do as well in a particular module, and was expected to explain and justify why), do expect the hiring manager to ask questions that are ‘deeper’, such as:
What do you want to do with your life?
Why are you interested in this profession/major?
What do you bring to the table in terms of skill sets?
What makes you different or special?
In other words, be prepared to convince them that you are THE INTERN they absolutely have to hire!
5. Enjoy the experience!
-credits to pitchfork.com-
It sound so simple but is not easy to achieve. No matter what comes your way, keep all your positivity close by you and embrace the challenges with an open mind and a ‘can-do’ attitude. Bear this in mind, it’s all the experiences of your internships in Singapore that counts.