By Emma Giarracco
While students can pursue professional development opportunities at any time and in any order they would like to, you will often reap the most benefits for your time and effort by being intentional with the steps you take and when you choose to take them. Below is a suggested timeline you could work from to help you manage your professional development goals. You can read tips for each of the steps listed below on the other pages of this website.
First year, Fall semester
First year, Spring semester
Put together your resume. Schedule an appointment at the Career Center to have someone look over your resume and give you tips. Attend events and use resources available at the Career Center. Keep your Handshake and LinkedIn profile up to date.
First year, Summer
Explore opportunities by visiting websites (companies or REUs) and keeping notes. A little bit of time investment over the summer will help everything run a little smoother and more efficiently next school year! Here’s a few places to start:
- ACS Internships for Undergraduate Chemistry Students
- Emory Campus Life Internships Resource
- Internships and Fellowships for DACA and Undocumented Students
- Cientifico Latino Office of Internships and Career Development (Berea College)
- List of NSF REU sites in chemistry
Second year, Fall semester
Explore internship opportunities by visiting companies’ websites, talking with older students, and meeting with a Career Center advisor. Or, if you’re considering doing an REU instead of an internship, visit REU websites, talk with older students and faculty members.
Think about who might be able to write you a letter of recommendation. Once you know where you’ll be applying, ask your letter writers early so they are not writing under a time crunch. Polish your resume. Note deadlines for the internships and/or REUs you’re planning to apply for. Keep your Handshake and LinkedIn profiles up to date.
Second year, Spring semester
Apply to internship and/or REU programs. Prepare for interviews early in the semester. Keep your Handshake and LinkedIn profiles up to date.
Second year, Summer
If you got an REU or internship, congratulations! Represent yourself well and take full advantage of your opportunity! If you didn’t, politely ask your contacts what you could next year to make your application stronger, and decide the best way to spend your summer to set yourself up for success next academic year!
Third and Fourth Years
Continue to network. Send thank you emails to anyone you interviewed, interned, or researched with. Explore a second REU or internship. Be confident and continue to put yourself out there! (…and keep your Handshake and LinkedIn profiles up to date.)