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Best ways to find opportunities during university for volunteer or research or internship experience?

#volunteer #internship #job #first-job

Thank you comment icon Hi, As far as volunteer work is concerned, here are some opportunities that should be interesting: 1. Amnesty International (as a Decoder Volunteer) - https://decoders.amnesty.org/ 2. Led By Foundation - https://www.ledby.org/volunteerwithus 3. Prison Journalism Project - https://prisonjournalismproject.org/volunteer/ 4. 7 Cups (as a Volunteer Listener) - https://www.7cups.com/listener/become-a-volunteer-listener.php 5. Crowd2Map Tanzania (as a Mapper Volunteer) - https://crowd2map.org/get-involved/how-we-map/ Hope this helps. Karina B

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Subject: Career question for you

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Dhairya’s Answer

Hi Mia,
Great question and also it's fantastic you're being proactive. On the research front, the best thing to do is talk to your academic adviser or the chair of an academic department. Usually they will have recommendations on how to research to professors for research opportunities. The department chair also will know of which professors are looking for researcher assistants. Also if you have taken a class or a currently taking a class which aligns with your research interests, you talk to your professor directly and see if there any opportunities.

On the internship front, check in with your school's career office. Larger companies will often have formal internship programs that you can apply to. The career office and google will help you find those. For smaller companies, I'd suggest going on linkedin. Look for people at the company with job titles or descriptions that match your interest. Send them a polite message stating you're a student and interested in learning more about their career and experiences. Don't be discouraged if you don't hear back as !ost professionals are busy. But many are excited to connect with students and are willing to share their stories. If they have capacity, request time for a 30 min phone call or coffee/tea meeting. After talking to them, mention you're interested in internship opportunities and see if they might be able to help you out.

Good luck!


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Michelle’s Answer

Hi Mia,

There are multiple resources you can inquire for intern or volunteer opportunities.

Here are some options I would recommend:
1. Check with Your School counselor or Career Student Services office.
2. You can research Local Organizations or contact local business HR dept for opportunities.
3. Ask Family or Friends and research online.

All the best and great job on being proactive.
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Simeon’s Answer

I would talk to your academic advisors about volunteer and internship opportunities and see if there are any extracurricular clubs that grab your attention. You'll want to build up a professional network by making friends, mostly with people in a similar situation as yourself, and see if anyone is able to connect you with an opportunity.
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Fiona’s Answer

Depending on the industry you are looking to get into, there may be career fairs for internship programmes. I think your attitude is spot on, it is good to get as much experience from anywhere in the work force early on - volunteering or research etc. This shows potential employers you are keen to obtain experience and also may have developed soft skills. This will also improve your chances of obtaining internships and jobs of your choice later on.
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chiara’s Answer

Have you been in contact with your university? They usually have job boards and such or through your professor you can ask if anyone they know is looking for a trainee or other.

Also if you look onto glassier, indeed, or linked in, you can narrow down the search for your field, in BC, to see what is available specifying that your are looking for an internship or trainee program in the search box.

Also, ask around, you parents, friends, team mates may know of someone who is looking for an intern, NET work :)

And have fun!
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Hillary’s Answer

Great question:

For research, I second Dariya. However, it really helps to work directly with a trusted professor who's research you're interested in. Start asking early and often if there are research spots available in the summer, and if there is anything you need to learn or do prior to stepping into a research role. For example, maybe you need to learn some basic code prior to lab work or have a certain prerequisite. If you can't get in with your favorite professor, then go to the head of the department and ask what's open.

For internships, your career office will most likely have something for you, or can at least point you in the right direction. If they don't have a formal internship program you're interested in, they might be able to help you find and connect with a company who has internships that you are interested in. Like with research, connect early and often to understand if there is anything you can do to give you a leg up or at least get your foot in the door.

With volunteerism, that one is easy! Research local NPOs in your area that you're interested in and simply start reaching out. Most NPOs are thrilled to have any extra hands they can. Smaller nonprofits are easier to get in with than large ones. With volunteerism, don't be afraid to do grunt work or menial tasks. It isn't fun, but it's super helpful to those folks and bonus, volunteerism obviously looks great on a resume!

Best of luck!!
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