Getting work experience during your degree is useful as it will value to your CV, showing employers that you have experienced life outside of study and that you have initiative and general employability skills.
It can show potential employers your knowledge, suitability for and commitment to a particular career area.
Relevant work experience can help you gain an edge in employers' eyes in a very competitive jobs market.
Some Internship programmes in larger companies are used as part of the graduate recruitment selection process, where employers recruit from the group of participants on their internship schemes.
Opportunity to develop and learn new skills, evaluate the skills you have and identify those you need to develop further.
Opportunity to try out and learn about the jobs and industries that interest you. Experience is a great teacher and work experience provides a good opportunity to test out a job / industry / sector and really see if it suits you. Some post-graduate courses leading to careers in social work, psychology and counselling, for example, expect applicants to have prior experience (such as volunteer work) in that area.
These are structured work experience programmes where students/recent graduates receive supervised, practical experience in a career-related area. Some features of internships include:
- Fixed time period.
- Training is provided.
- Project Work may be involved – student may be responsible for a completing particular project
- Usually advertised between October and March – closing dates can be early in the academic year.
- Students from ALL disciplines are invited to apply e.g. Arts & Science students can often apply for business internships.
- Competition for places is tough but remember that an estimated third of graduate vacancies are filled by applicants who have already worked for their employer as an undergraduate.
- Some courses have an integrated placement as part of the programme - if this applies to you make sure you contact the Maynooth University Placement Officer
Placement Programmes at Maynooth University
Volunteering is a useful was of gaining experience in an area that interests you. The benefits include -
- Giving your time to helping others can be a source of personal satisfaction.
- You can get an insight into career areas of interest to you, allowing you to see what is involved in day to day work. It can help you to assess how the career matches your interests, skills and aptitudes.
- Gain valuable experience to strengthen your CV - experience can enhance your job or postgraduate course application.
- Opportunity to build your network in your chosen career area.
It is estimated that around 70% of students work at some stage during their studies. While part-time jobs help to pay your way through University, they can also provide useful learning opportunities and insights into roles and industries. Part-time work experience can provide potential employers with evidence of skills such as teamwork, organisational skills, business awareness, working under pressure, dealing with people and balancing the demands of work and study.
Where to look
Use MU FutureConnect - your Careers & Employability portal to find opportunities of interest to you.
Search for Graduate Internships on the CareersConnect (the Careers Centre) section of MU FutureConnect
Find out more about CareersConnect here
Search for Undergraduate Summer Internships, Micro-internships, Insight Days, Competitions on the Future Ready Connect (Experiential Learning Office) section of MU FutureConnect