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by Kalamalama staff


Summertime: Some students go home to visit family, some take vacations to Cancun, others backpack through Europe, and still others stick around Hawai‘i and simply have fun.

If you plan to stick around, you might consider an opportunity to make extra money and get some experience in your career field: an internship. Ah, but many students who want and need an internship have no idea how to find one. HPU can help, and so can the Web site summerjobs.com.

The College of Communication, which requires every COM major complete a practicum before graduating, even offers those classes. COM 3950 Communication Practicum, is the “top of the line” in communication opportunities, said Dr. Larry LeDoux, assistant professor of journalism.

“ The college maintains an extensive list of employers with interesting communication opportunities, many of which include pay, and the student gets academic credit for working in a career environment and making connections with potential employers, connections that often result in jobs after graduation,” LeDoux said. “Students call employers in their field and set up their own interviews. If they are hired, they can start the internship right away and enroll in the class whenever they register next,” he added.

The Communication Practicum course requires students complete only 200 hours for 3 credits, but students must have 9 upper-division credits in communication course and must be-approved by the dean. Students who don’t qualify for the practicum course can enroll in COM 3990 or 3991, paid or unpaid internships. For more information, visit the College offices, Room 504 FH Building, 1132 Bishop St.

HPU’s Career Services Center can also help students find internships. The center maintains an extensive data-base of potential employers and can enroll students for 1-3 credits. However, each credit of paid internship requires 200 hours (600 hours for 3 credits). Unpaid internships earn 1 credit every 75 hours, and require only 200 hours for 3 academic credits.

Center counselors work with students to locate an appropriate internship by providing leads and strategies a student can use in finding and securing a position.

Students can also do their own job research. That’s what sophomore Christina Failma did: “When I was looking for an internship,” Failma said, “I did research on several companies, determined which one I wanted to intern with, and then I called them and asked if they had an intern program.” Learning that they did, Failma applied and interviewed for a summer internship at Hickam Air Force Base. The counselors at HPU’s Career Services Center can help with job search strategies, or students can pursue their own with the help of Web sites such as summerjobs.com. Here’s their top 10 tips for finding a dream internship:

1. Plan ahead: Start looking for a summer internship in February.

2. Write a résumé and cover letter: Tell them your skills and experience.

3. Know your audience: Before applying for the internship, research the company and know what you can contribute.

4. Use correct spelling and grammar. Not having good writing skills will automatically put your résumé at the bottom of the pile.

5. Attach letters of reference. A good reference letter from a professor could give your résumé that extra push.

6. Be clear about your availability. Being reachable is one of the first things employers look at when hiring.

7. Don’t wait for the internship to come to you. Be proactive. Go out and look for it.

8. Network: Use whomever you know, including friends, family, and faculty.

9. Get the right contact information: Know who is in charge of hiring interns.

10. Pave the way for your career. If you find your dream internship use the experience to secure a job or find another internship that will work you up to your career.

Finding an internship can be stressful and disappointing at times, but don’t give up. The right internship is out there. As junior Jontue Martin said, “If you want an internship bad enough, you’ll do your best to get one!”

Jaime Ahmed, staff writer, contributed to this story.

“The college maintains an extensive list of employers with interesting communication opportunities, many of which include pay, and the student gets academic credit...”

Dr. Larry LeDoux, assistant professor of journalism



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