Quickly becoming the most nationally recognized career coach; Ryan Kahn (@ryankahnhired) is a career coach for Dream Careers, Inc., star of MTV’s Hired! and author of Hired! The Guide for the Recent Grad. Ryan has placed thousands of recent grads and job seekers on the path to their dream career. As a national speaker his advice has been featured in media outlets across the country, including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and US News & World Report.
By Ryan Kahn
Despite today’s ominous job market, college students have a great opportunity that can help them to grab that coveted dream job. That opportunity, for one Kent State grad, was an internship.
Kent State University alum Lyndsay Petruny knows all about hard work and the importance of internships as she was able to use her internship experience as a springboard to become Host/ Reporter for the NFL’s New England Patriots. According to Lyndsay “It was a challenge and a goal I set out for myself when I realized my love for sports and journalism could be my career someday if I worked hard enough. I encountered people along the way that kept my spirits high and told me I have what it takes to be successful in this business. Thinking about that motivated me and kept me going when I wanted to throw in the towel and potentially move towards a different career path.”
According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), 73% of employers are looking for candidates with prior internship experience. The way to your dream career is not always a straight path but what’s important is that you’re traveling in the right direction; an internship is your first step in that direction. Incredible jobs are still out there and are not just going to those perceived as ‘lucky.’ Driven students are leveraging their network and internships to position themselves into coveted careers — hard work presents luck.
“I think everyone should be doing something they love, and for me, my dream job is sports reporting. When I’m in the press box analyzing a game, it’s an unbelievable feeling.”
Prior to the Patriots Lyndsay was able to personally work with me and participate in Dream Careers, Inc.’s summer internship program where she relocated to Los Angeles after securing an internship FOX Sports Network. Lyndsay said “I was extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to work in two different departments, both the Assignment Desk and Highlights for Fox Sports’ nightly show Final Score. The connections I made and the advice and constructive criticism I received continue to motivate me and make me continuously ask myself how I can improve and become better. It was a life-changing experience.” For Lyndsay breaking into the industry was not always easy and learned the importance of having a mentor “There were so many obstacles along the way, and it looked like an internship with Fox Sports Net in Los Angeles was never going to work out, but Ryan made the impossible a reality.”
By working hard in her internship and expanding her network Lyndsay was able to position herself into her dream career. In closing she reflected “I think everyone should be doing something they love, and for me, my dream job is sports reporting. When I’m in the press box analyzing a game, it’s an unbelievable feeling. Sometimes I feel like I need to stop and pinch myself because I just think, ‘this is my job?’ I’m very thankful.”
Interested in getting an internship? My five surefire tips to securing an internship:
Network is Net Worth
We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Well, I see this as “Network is Net Worth.” The more relationships you have, the better chance you have down the road of getting referrals. Friends like hiring friends, so make sure to utilize yours and your families network to secure an internship.
Have you been to your campus career center? They are there for you, most careers centers offer resources and on site advisors to sit down and help you select the right career path. Career centers also often coordinate job fairs for their students so that you can get face to face with hundreds of companies all at once.
There are programs out there allowing you to take advantage of their professional relationships to get your foot in the door. Dream Careers, Inc. is the leading internship program placing thousands of students onto the path of their dream job. Their program has locations around the globe offering students: housing, meal plan, transportation, career seminars, and weekend activities. By using a program like this you are leveraging their experience to jumpstarting your career.
There are plenty of internship websites out there that allow you to search databases of thousands of postings. Indeed does a great job of sourcing postings from all avenues across the web so that have the most complete list of what available out there. Keep in mind when sending your resume out via a job post you are competing against sometimes thousands of other students so make sure your experience and accomplishments are clearly stated so that your resume can shine through the crowd.
If you know the specific company you want to intern for, find their website and click on their “Contact Us” page. There you will be able to give them a call directly, don’t be afraid it’s simple all you have to do is call up the number and say “Hi, I was interested in speaking with your Internship Coordinator?” From there they’ll forward you in the right direction and often you’ll find them more than happy to consider your resume.