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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find an internship?
There are many ways that students can search for internships, and one size does not fit all, it may require some effort on your part to find the right internship "fit" for you. We recommend utilizing the resources accessible via our website, www.HireACane.com, as well as utilizing our Career Advisors.


Should an internship be directly related to my major?
Not necessarily. Some students look at internships as a way to gain general experience, while others are utilizing this experience as a "trial" to determine if their chosen career path is in fact one they enjoy.


What should I consider before looking for or participating in an internship?
Determine what you are looking for in an internship. Are you looking to gain experience in a particular field? Are you simply looking to gain real-life experience? Is this to develop a personal goal or a professional one? Answering some of these questions for yourself will aid in your search process.


What should I do to prepare for an internship?
You should have a resume prepared. You can receive feedback on your resume at a resume critique, either by scheduling an appointment with an advisor, or visiting our Walk-In Advising (Monday – Thursday, 10am-4:30pm), or uploading it to HireACane.com.
You can also prepare by attending any of our Career Development Programs that are offered over the course of each semester.


Should I expect to be paid for my internship experience?
This depends. Generally speaking, employers should compensate their interns. This usually means that they do it monetarily or via academic credit. Some things to consider are that just because an opportunity is a paid one, doesn't necessarily make it a better opportunity than an unpaid one. You should definitely take the time to consider your own financial situation (especially if over the summer, as financial aid disbursement could be different) to make the decision as to what is the best fit for you.


How many internships should I do?
As many as you can/want to do. There is no "magic" number. Internships are what you make of them. We recommend 2-3, as it allows for a varied experience among your chosen career field, but it is completely up to you. Employers like to see well-rounded students, and internships are one way to gain additional experience to fill in any potential gaps. They typically like to see internship experience on a resume.


When should I start searching for internship opportunities?
Right now! If you think you want to complete an internship then start looking at what is out there. Depending on what point in the semester it is, you may not see the "perfect" internship, however it will give you an idea of what your options might be. Whether you are a Freshman or a Senior, it never hurts to look. We recommend securing your internship a semester prior before you are slated to begin working.


How long should I be at my internship?
Usually, an internship will last the length of the academic semester you are enrolled in. We want your internship to be beneficial to you and also to your employer. Generally a part-time internship will be 160 hours, which if working 8 hours a week will equal about 20 weeks. Plus being somewhere for a week, won't really give you a sense of what it's like to work there.


What if I am an international student?
You should still complete an internship if you would like. As you search for opportunities, look at the work authorization required for the position. If you meet the requirements and are interested, apply! Keep in mind that if it is a paid internship, you will need to talk to your ISSS Advisor to ensure you obtain the proper work authorization. Visit their website for more information.


When are internship deadlines?
It is important to note that deadlines will be set by the individual employer and may vary widely. Larger, more established programs may begin searching for Summer interns in the Fall, simply due to the scale of their selection/interview process. Smaller programs may have shorter selection processes.


How can I get a job or internship if I have no experience?
Employers value skills developed through academic work, volunteer experiences, extracurricular experiences, or other experiences which demonstrate skills useful in work. Not all of these skills are job type specific; some of these skills are general such as communication skills and analytical skills, and can transfer to different settings. And routine types of student jobs can demonstrate to employers that you have been a successful employee. Obtaining internships and is another great way to bridge this gap.


How many should I apply to?
As many as you'd like. Keep in mind that you shouldn't apply to something you wouldn't want to work in, however if you are interested you should definitely apply. We hear from interns who applied for one position and were selected, and we've also heard from interns who applied to multiple positions and were able to choose the one they liked best.


What is a Co-op?
A Co-op (short for cooperative education) is a method of combining classroom based education with practical work experience. This usually involves academic credit being provided for a structured job experience. This is generally done in conjunction with an academic program.


I want to do a Co-op, can Toppel help me?
Unfortunately no, the Toppel Career Center does not endorse co-ops. A co-op is conducted through an academic program and it is not something that the Toppel Career Center can assist you with. We would recommend that you speak with your Academic Advisor to determine a course of action.


 
Toppel Career Center
 
Physical Address:
5225 Ponce De Leon Blvd.
Coral Gables, FL 33146
Phone: 305-284-5451
Fax: 305-284-3668
Mailing Address:
PO Box 249175
Coral Gables, FL 33124-5610