Making the Most of Your MBA Summer Internship

In this new blog series, our mbaMission Career Coaches offer invaluable advice and industry-related news to help you actively manage your career. Topics include building your network, learning from mistakes and setbacks, perfecting your written communication, and mastering even the toughest interviews. To schedule a free half-hour consultation with one of our mbaMission Career Coaches, click here.

Making the Most of Your MBA Summer InternshipWith business school classes and exams ending and summer rapidly approaching, it is important to think strategically about your internship. (Note: For those first-year MBA students who are still actively engaged in the internship search, there is still time left! We are happy to help; please contact us for a complimentary consultation.)

As you prepare for your internship, we recommend that you do the following:

  • Confirm the logistics of your internship (e.g., start date, time, location, dress code).
  • Ask your employer if you can do any specific preparation/pre-work before your start date. Also ask this question of any advocates within the firm or second-year students who completed the same internship last summer.
  • Update your contacts (and your LinkedIn profile). Review your spreadsheet listing those whom you met throughout your internship search. Use this as an opportunity to reach back out to them, thank them for their time, and update them on your plans for the summer. (You can also update any pre-business school contacts—perhaps your recommenders for business school or former colleagues.)
  • Set specific goals for your summer internship (e.g., skills to be learned, experiences to be gained, and people to meet).

Here are some other tips for achieving success in your internship:

  • Do not wait until the midpoint of your internship to get feedback on your performance. If feedback is not proactively shared by the end of the second week, ask for it. You want to avoid any mid- or end-of-summer surprises!
  • Ask for help if you need it—just do it in a professional and confident way. If you run into a challenging situation and want another perspective on how to handle it, reach out to us for a complimentary consultation.
  • Be confident and take initiative, but do not be arrogant! Demonstrate your commitment to, engagement in, and excitement for the work, the team, and the company.
  • Jot down notes about your tasks and accomplishments. They will come in handy as you update your resume at the end of the summer and even, perhaps, prepare for full-time interviewing in the fall.
  • Assess your fit with the role and the company. Do they meet your goals?
  • Read the emails from your school’s career management office; often, they provide important details about such topics as full-time recruiting resume deadlines and on-campus recruiting.

Have you been admitted to business school? If so, do you want to get a head start on defining your career goals? Do you need help preparing for job interviews or learning how to effectively network with your target employers? Or maybe you want to be a top performer in your current role but are unsure how to maximize your potential. Let an mbaMission Career Coach help via a free 30-minute consultation!

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