Antonia dives into how she boosted her international experience with the CAPA Global Internship Course. Want to share how your professional skills and global internship make you a hireable candidate? This post will give you an overview on how you can prepare for a career and convey your strengths and achievements to potential employers.
Alongside internships, CAPA students take the Global Internship Course. This class is designed so you can make the most of your internship experience and learn more about professionalism in a global context.
You may be thinking “I already know how to write a resume” and “I have already taken a professionalism class in university”. How could this be any different?
For starters, it is different because your instructor for the course will not be in the US. They will be in another country, where the professional environment is different. Secondly, during the course you will learn and practice how to introduce your international internship to future employers. Thirdly, this course is focused on teaching students about Diversity, Inclusion and Equity (DIE) in the workspace. Look up a company you want to work for… chances are they have guidelines on how they include DIE in their company's culture.
The GIC course is not what you initially think it is. In this blog post I want to highlight some of the unique lessons I have learned while attending the GIC.
1. The Mock interview
In my opinion, this is the most helpful activity you will complete during the course. This is an assignment that will make you research for jobs in your area, update your resume, write a cover letter, and meet with an interviewer… so basically all the steps you complete when you apply for a job.
Getting ready for my interview!
For this assignment you will prepare yourself as you would for a real-life job interview. You will meet with a stranger who has researched the job you are applying to and they will prepare questions based on the job description and your materials. Interviews last around 15 minutes, and afterwards the interviewer goes through feedback to keep in mind next time you apply for a job. In my case I received feedback on my resume and cover letter, and the interviewer even shared a couple extra questions she thought I might have been asked in a longer interview.
Here I am at my mock interview. Hayle (my interviewer) was super nice and shared some useful tips for future interviews.
This is a great opportunity to search for a new professional opportunity. While searching for internships in my area of interest I found some great opportunities that I would qualify for. Since all the materials I need to apply have already been updated, I will take my chances and apply for a new internship. Previous CAPA students who have gone on to apply to the jobs they based their interviews on have gotten the job!
2. It’s All in the Details
You may think your resume and interview skills are pristine, and I am sure you have worked really hard on them. Nevertheless, data shows that members of Gen Z are likely to switch jobs multiple times during their lives. This means you will have to write countless cover letters, take many interviews, and keep your resume updated. Take this course as a chance to practice and focus on the details.
A shameless plug for my LinkedIn. If you click on the speaker icon, you can learn to pronounce my last name. Feel free to connect with me and start building your network!
Some of my favorite new small details are:
a) You can add a recording to your LinkedIn with the correct pronunciation of your name. If you are like me and have a last name that people have a hard time with, this is for you.
b) Personalize your LinkedIn URL and add it to your resume. A small sign that you are the “detail-oriented” person you described in your skill set.
c) Post about your international internship on your LinkedIn. Publish a post about what you have learned and achieved. Show your connections how you adapted to the current situation and completed an internship from home.
3. Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity
Diversity is a word usually thrown around to sound impressive. Today, more companies strive to have diverse employees. Research shows that diverse companies usually perform better than less diverse companies, but this only works when there is inclusion and equity. Companies need to think about making all of their employees feel safe, included and valued. This way employees can achieve their full potential and benefit the company with diverse opinions and knowledge. Learning more about the importance of DIE in the workplace made me realize that I want to work for an organization that implements strategies for diversity in their own work culture.
In my opinion there are two ways you can view this class: you can treat it like an obligation and do it just to get it done; or you can consider the activities they are offering and use them to your benefit. Yes, you might encounter activities you have already done, but you will definitely also encounter information that you haven't seen before. Make sure to finish the assignments, but also think beyond your grade and reflect on how these activities can help you start building your professional career.
Antonia Bignotti is an official CAPA blogger for summer 2020, sharing her story in frequent posts on CAPA World. A Human Biology major from the University of Kansas, she is remotely studying abroad in London this semester.
Antonia's journey continues all semester so stay tuned.