Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.

Feelings of inadequacy-finding work experience

uaChemE2018uaChemE2018 Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
I'm a junior majoring in chemical engineering at the University of Alabama and I'm on track to graduate in a year and a half. I feel very inadequate when I compare myself to my peers. I understand that industry experience is a pre-requisite in 95% of cases for entry level jobs. I also have a 3.3 gpa some volunteer experience and minimal extracurricular involvement. I've recently been working a lot harder and made a 3.6 this past semester but I feel like it's a lost cause. My questions are: what can I do to improve my chances of an internship? and how well founded are my worries? Also how much pull can a connection to a company have? I know that is ambiguous but I'm just trying to hear some personal anecdotes to compare to my situation.
I know I really need to calm down but this is really stressing me out.

Replies to: Feelings of inadequacy-finding work experience

  • MaelstromMonkeyMaelstromMonkey Registered User Posts: 199 Junior Member
    Have you visited your school's career placement center? It can help you find a job/internship and help groom your resume & interview skills.

  • uaChemE2018uaChemE2018 Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    Yes, I have. We have an online resource where businesses can come recruit students
  • colorado_momcolorado_mom Registered User Posts: 8,652 Senior Member
    Connections do help....and that includes those placement center resources. Just keep plugging away. Some of the bigger companies do their internship hiring in the fall. But my son got one of his internship offerss (and his campus research offer) during spring semester. Best of luck!
  • NeoDymiumNeoDymium Registered User Posts: 2,304 Senior Member
    I will simply say that you're in a very average position. It's neither uncommon nor disadvantageous to have your first real industry experience the summer before your senior year. And your GPA is fine, and most recruitment occurs in the spring (some recruit early, most do not due to profit-based budgets).

    The path forward is simple: make a good resume, apply to jobs, go to career fairs, cast a wide net, and keep at it until you get an offer that works out well. There is nothing too esoteric about what you have to do from here.
  • eyemgheyemgh Registered User Posts: 4,820 Senior Member
    Make sure your resume is ATS friendly. If you don't know what that means, Google for template suggestions. Most non-ATS resumes are simply rejected. Good luck.
  • colorado_momcolorado_mom Registered User Posts: 8,652 Senior Member
    I had to look up ATS (Application Tracking System) term. I correctly assumed it was automated scanning but was not familiar with the lingo. Good advise!
  • NeoDymiumNeoDymium Registered User Posts: 2,304 Senior Member
    It's easier than it sounds. But it does mean that a boring text resume that lists important qualities and lacks any fancy formatting is best.
  • 4getit4getit Registered User Posts: 155 Junior Member
    Ditto much of other posters' advice. Cast a wide net. That means you have to work at it more than visiting the listings offered at the career center. Check sites such as Indeed and FastWeb. Leverage your connections through parents, friends, or professors. Inquire with profs about research opportunities over the summer that might be a good alternative if you can't find professional work. Complete at least two practice interviews at the career center. There is much to know and learn about how to put your best foot forward.

    My S's summer work between Jr. and Sr. year was working in a "temp" job testing software, not a formal internship. He found a connection through a man he knew at church who installed cable TV wiring for the major provider in the area. Ended up being extremely valuable experience and was achieved through non-traditional means, not through a website or the career center. Dumb luck, I suppose. His permanent job he found on his own, as well, by applying directly to the company which makes products that he likes. The career center at his college didn't have many connections outside of the region it was located in. Had to do a lot of work on his own to open that door.
This discussion has been closed.