August is a bittersweet month–it means that summer is coming to a close but it also means that you’ll soon be reunited with friends for another school year.
You just spent your summer working hard, and I don’t mean on your tan: I’m talking about the summer internship that took up most of your time. Interns don’t make photocopies or fetch coffee—or at least Intel they don’t—they do meaningful work that will last well past their end date.
Internships are serious work–you’re thrown into a new culture, different environment and given real projects that you’re expected to deliver on in a few weeks. Not to mention you’re often in a new city surrounded by new faces. So what did you do? Chances are that you not only put it into survival mode and kicked butt, but hopefully you had fun while you were doing it too! When you head back to campus, there are a few things you should do to wrap up your internship:
Highlight Your Accomplishments:
So really, what did you do? Whether you created a new program, improved efficiency by 5% or saved the company money, you want to share what you were able to accomplish during your internship. Didn’t quite meet a deliverable? That’s okay too—share how much progress you made towards the goal.
Don’t just focus on the tasks that you were assigned but other projects you may have picked up as well. Did you get involved with the company’s volunteer program? Were you able to find a more efficient way to share project updates? Did you take advantage of the company’s open-door policy and get time with your organization’s leader?
Most internship programs have a final presentation component where you share your work with other interns and the larger organization as well. Your final presentation is the last impression you are going to leave on the company; this is your time to shine and show what you were able to accomplish. You want to leave your team with an impact and the feeling that you were able to contribute positively to the work at hand. Tip: Think about how you are going to update your resume after your internship—these bullets will guide what you highlight during your presentation.
Tie Up Loose Ends:
Still have some unfinished business? Even seasoned employees bite off more than they can chew or they uncover an element to a project that pushes out deadlines—it happens, but what are you going to do about it?
You should leave your internship with a solid plan identifying who is taking over your projects and what needs to happen next. Make sure any documents you were working on are shared as well. This ensures that the hard work you put in isn’t in vain and that momentum is carried forward. Tip: schedule a separate pass down meeting with your colleague that will be taking over your work a few days before you leave. This way if there are any questions, you are still around to answer them. If you don’t have any outstanding work but have some great ideas on a different program or on how the internship experience can be improved, share those as well!
Keep in Touch:
If you had fun during your internship, chances are that your colleagues had fun with you too! Whether or not you return to the team, these are great people to keep in touch with over the course of your career as future coworkers, mentors and friends.
A few days before you leave, send out an e-mail with details on how to keep in touch after you leave. Tip: CC your personal email address so you have your coworkers’ emails saved. Also be sure to include your details on the out-of-office auto-reply in case you receive emails after your last day. Lesley shared a few tips earlier this week on how to continue the benefits of a summer internship after you leave that are helpful as well.
Internships are great: they let you try out a company and a company try you out, at the same time. Whether or not it’s a match, the tips above will help you wrap up your internship.
Sejal is a Recruitment Marketing Project Manager at Intel. She is part of the team that is responsible for Intel’s global employment brand. This team helps connect candidates with Intel and Intel with candidates using channels such as the Jobs at Intel web site, the Life at Intel microsite and other Web 2.0 channels. Sejal specifically manages theJobs at Intel Blog and Intel’s recruitment Facebook strategy. Originally from Toronto, Ontario (yes—a real, breathing Canadian!), Sejal graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with her Bachelor’s in Communications before starting at Intel in 2008. When she’s not working, you’ll find Sejal working at crossing things off of her Bucket List (which includes skydiving, reading 1000 books and traveling the world), eating cupcakes or spending time with family and friends. To learn more about opportunities with Intel, visit intel.com/jobs, follow Intel on Twitter @JobsatIntel or check out the Jobs@Intel blog!