With the first few weeks of school wrapping up, it is time to start thinking about those #ViterbiCareers. The career fair is right around the corner, and already on campus there have been plenty of information sessions for different companies and career guidance events to help everyone get ready for the career fair! It seriously feels like school just started, how is it already almost October??
As a senior this year, the next few weeks will be a little different for me as I am looking for full-time jobs instead of internships! However, I’m lucky because the past two summers I’ve had two great internships which helped me learn more about my industry and what I really want to do once I graduate. Internships are a great way to fill your summer, as you get real work experience and you get to preview what it would be like to work at a particular company!
— Kelly Lynch (@KellyLynchUSC) July 8, 2014
The summer after my sophomore year I worked for Kiewit as a field engineer on a light rail line (read more here), and this past summer I worked for Turner as an estimating engineer in the main office (read more here). From both internships I got invaluable experience and learned more than I ever thought was possible! Even though I was just an intern, my supervisors respected me so they gave me work that was meaningful and engaging. I also really enjoyed that both of my internships were different, even though they both were for construction companies. For Kiewit, I was assigned to one particular project and I got to work on it out in the field. It was amazing to see the progress of the project even just throughout the summer. And then for Turner since I was in the main office I got to work on multiple projects at once and get a little taste of everything!
Although thinking about your future career and trying to get an internship can be scary, Viterbi does a great job at supporting students. Even during your first semester you start receiving help on building your resume in Freshmen Academy, which is a class all engineering freshmen take in the fall. There are also numerous resources that students can take advantage of, including Viterbi Career Services. Viterbi Career Services is not only responsible for all the career fairs, but they also put on plenty of events like alumni panels, major spotlight sessions, workshops, and networking events. They also have walk-in career advisement hours, so you can stop by every day and get your questions answer!
One of my favorite resources is the Viterbi Career Gateway, which is an online portal where hundreds of internships and job opportunities are posted only for USC students. It is very easy to apply because normally the only thing you have to do is upload your resume to the position. This was actually how I got my internship with Turner! I applied for an internship through the portal, and a week later I was interviewing on campus for the position. It can really be that simple.
There are also of plenty of student organizations that help in career development. I’m involved in ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers), and we put on lots of career focused events like resume workshops, internship panels, and mock interviews. There are also plenty of clubs that host information sessions and professional development nights where you can network with lots of companies! You will definitely want to take advantage of all these events and resources, because you really can never get too much help when it comes to your career.
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