"Internships are hard work but they are worth the effort"
Meet Alefa Chowdhury, an intern for Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix. If you haven’t seen her on campus, you may have spotted her working at the Detroit Auto Show last month. Alefa is different from dozens of other business students that have an internship because she is only a second-semester freshman in the University of Michigan-Dearborn.
Alefa did not waste time looking for opportunities to gain real-world experience and grow as a leader.
Less than two months into her college career she made valuable connections while participating in a Non-Profit Career Fair on campus. Typically students pursue internships later in their college career, however new trends suggest that even as freshmen you should already be taking advantage of networking events and career fairs.
“We are finding that more and more employers want interns who are young or just beginning their studies,” noted Pam Morris, Internship Program Manager for the Internship and Career Management Center (ICMC). She elaborated “Employers are ultimately working to get students into their talent pipeline-the earlier the better.”
This method allows employers to catch students early enough to leave a positive impression on their developing work habits and perception of the industry. Students are more likely to stay after they leave school, providing a win-win situation for the company and graduate. In order to adapt and meet the needs of these industries, the ICMC serves to make students aware of Leadership Programs designed for underclassmen and provides workshops that prepare students for these opportunities.
If you are a freshman like Alefa, it is never too early (or too late) to enhance your networking, interview or personal branding skills. She confirms, “Internships are hard work but are worth the effort as they provide hands-on experience and prepare you for future opportunities.” Our office would call this your “track record,” one of the three important factors to build on as you advance your career.
The ICMC is hosting multiple workshops on resumes, interviewing, networking and more for the month of February and you are invited! Our sessions are only 30-40 minutes in length and will prepare you for your internship and career after graduation. Visit our webpage to learn more.