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Students seek jobs for break

Justin Tardiff | Monday, April 3, 2006

While many Notre Dame students have already landed internships in their hometowns, in new cities, or even in foreign countries, it isn’t too late to find the perfect summer job.

Susanne Thorup, manager of internship development at the Career Center, said while most employers have already hired their interns for the summer, some are still looking for qualified students to fill positions.

“It’s the end of recruiting season, but we can still help students tap into lots of resources,” Thorup said. “There are still lots of local internships available for students who will be staying on campus this summer.”

Hundreds of employers have interviewed students on campus in the Career Center during the past few months, Thorup said. Most of those were for business majors, but the Career Center prides itself on its wide variety of resources for all majors, particularly on its Web site, she said.

The Web site features GoIrish, a database where students can search for hundreds of internships across the country, and Hot Internships, a site focusing on particular internships that might attract students.

Summer internships are not limited to business majors and those in other career-specific fields, Thorup said.

“We have helped students find all types of internships,” she said. “Some internships are more competitive than others, but it depends on what type of internship you want to do.”

As a result of such fierce competition, some students Thorup worked with this year applied for up to 50 internships apiece.

Thorup said the Career Center has helped students find jobs for this summer in museums, research laboratories, film and television and even the not-for-profit sector.

“Paid internships are generally more competitive than unpaid internships, but we’ve found that there is also a high demand for unpaid ones,” Thorup said.

In addition to poring through the Career Center’s Web sites and pamphlets, many students have applied for Summer Service internships through the Center for Social Concerns. Each summer, the CSC offers both domestic and international service opportunities for Notre Dame students.

Andrea Smith-Shappell, director of Summer Service Learning and Alumni Relations at the Center for Social Concerns, said this summer over 200 students will be working for non-profit agencies in “every major city and beyond” through the CSC’s Summer Service Learning Program. Students will work in schools, hospitals, reservations and hurricane relief on the Gulf Coast.

“Some internships are related to students’ majors and some are not,” Smith-Shappell said. “Students really want to be involved in direct service.”

Participants in the domestic Summer Service Learning Program receive $2,300 scholarships from sponsoring Notre Dame Alumni clubs, and some students may qualify for additional grants from AmeriCorps.

The Summer Service Learning Program has been in place for 26 years, while the International Summer Service Learning Program began in the last decade. The international program has “grown exponentially” in terms of the number of service sites and the number of students interested, Smith-Shappell said.

Josh Hoen, a junior economics and political science major, will spend his summer in the West African nation of Ghana. He applied and was accepted to go through the CSC’s competitive International Summer Service Program application process.

“I’m going because I like traveling and Ghana is something that I really care a lot about,” Hoen said.

In Ghana, Hoen and another student, junior Morgan Dill, will work with children in primary education and teach computer skills to adults. They will also write grants for service organizations in Ghana and teach others to write grants.

To prepare for the summer, Hoen said he and other ISSP students participated in a retreat and must take a one credit class called Global Issues this spring. In the months leading up to his departure, Hoen said he must receive required immunizations and attend lectures about African issues.

“I’m trying to familiarize myself with the culture so I’ll be ready when I get there,” Hoen said.