by Annie Hendrick
1. Create a résumé
The employer wants to know your name, address, phone number, and email address. Provide this on the top of the first page of your résumé.
Be sure to first list the most relevant experiences related to the internship or job to which you are applying. Keep your résumé organized and for the most part in chronological order.
When applying for internships, Education, Honors, and Awards will usually go at the beginning of the résumé and will move to the end once you have developed some professional experience.
Be sure to include certifications, achievements, volunteer, internship, employment experiences and any special skills you have.
For internships and entry level positions, one page is sufficient. Be concise; an employer wants to be able to skim your résumé and get the sense of who you are as a potential employee.
Proofread! Don’t let little mistakes slip – employers may notice and it could hurt your chances of getting hired.
Talking to your guidance counselor in school may be helpful to obtain a quick and easy to read format, but check online for professional / unprofessional formats. For regular summer jobs or part-time jobs, a professional résumé is probably not needed, but you still need to appear prepared and qualified.
2. Scope out places that are hiring
It is always easiest to start by simply making a list of places you could see yourself working at. Write down these places and when you make your rounds, visit them to ask about hiring. Check local job sites for your city/town and surrounding areas, as well as the Help Wanted ads in your newspaper. Small local papers like The Asbury Park Press (http://app.gannettonline.com/careerbuilder/) usually have listings too. Employers in fields like retail often are interested in hiring teens and are willing to provide training. Search by the category of employment you’re interested in. These types of employers often don’t advertise so check with the stores or restaurants in your town to see if they have openings.
3. Walk in to ask about the job/ pick up an application
When the time comes to go out and get the job be confident, and walk in smiling and happy to be there. An employer wants a pleasant, people-person. Be direct about why you are there, and ask about the job. Offer to leave a copy of your résumé, or take an application to fill out. If the establishment is not hiring at the time but asks you to come back at another time during the year, don’t forget to follow up!
4. Be prepared for an on the spot interview
An employer may just want an application filled out when you first walk in, but always be ready for an interview. You never know when they will schedule one. Some easy things to remember when interviewing are:
- Review your work experiences. Be ready to support past accomplishments with specific information. Have your facts ready.
- Practice before you go in.
- Maintain eye contact with your interviewer – show them that you want the job.
- Be positive 🙂
- Try to relate to the company and the interviewer
It may be hard to find a job with all of the competing candidates – all of your friends will be desperate for job too, so start looking early on before the summer starts, because that’s when almost every job is filled. Once you find the one that’s right for you, you’ll be well on your way to building up your college savings or buying that brand new (or used) car!