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Q&A: Post-Graduate Internships

Q&A: Post-Graduate Internships

Read through this Q&A on post graduate internships for some great advice on work life after college.

By Peter Vogt, MonsterTRAK Career Coach

March 12, 2009

Peter Vogt, the MonsterTrak Career Coach, answers questions about having an internship after graduating from college.

How old is too old for internships and volunteering?

I’m 27 now. Lost a few years because of personal problems. I’m now in much better shape, but at a loss for explanations to employers regarding gaps in my resume, low grades, etc.

My long-term goals include grad school, though at the moment I want some kind of real-world experience. Any help would be appreciated.

Answer:
You’re never “too old” to do volunteering or an internship. And you’re certainly not too old at only 27! Did you know that the average age of today’s college students is around 25? So by all means, pursue volunteer opportunities, internships, temping – in short, anything you can do to gain some experience in your chosen field.

The more experience you gain, the less “explaining” you’ll have to do to employers who might wonder about your resume gaps, lower grades, etc. It could still come up, of course, so it might be a good idea to tell them something like “I was trying to figure out what to be when I grow up” (or something along those lines!). Everyone can relate to that and how it might affect your resume as well as your grades.

I have a bachelor’s degree in Mass-Media Communication. I want to get started in magazine writing. I had an internship in college but I don’t think it was enough. Is it still possible to get an internship after college to gain experience or should I just go the entry-level route?

Answer:
Given the current economy and entry-level job market, you’re smart to want to gain some additional experience, particularly since you want to write for magazines (which can be hard to break into).

You CAN get an internship even though you’ve already graduated. It’s not as common as current undergraduates having internships, but it does occur fairly often (especially in nonprofit organizations). So while you continue looking for an entry-level job, do be open to taking an internship as well.


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