Career Advising Series: Professional communication & ethics in the workplace


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By Laura Myers, associate director of student career advising, serving students in the School of Communication and Bienen School of Music.

**Hear more on summer internships from Laura and career adviser Mearah Quinn-Brauner in the second episode of our new NCA Career Chats Podcast, including advice on professional dress, maintaining contact with co-workers and how to leave your internship on a high note.

LauraPresenting yourself professionally is a “must” when starting your internship, and I don’t mean just in your attire. So much goes into professionalism, and in most instances your communication and ethics are going to be two of the most noticed behaviors by your supervisor, staff, and even other interns.

Here are some things to think about as you begin your internship:

Verbal & Non-verbal Communication

  • Avoid gossiping in the workplace even if others are. We all need to “vent” sometimes but be very careful as people often hear a lot more than you think. My best advice is to do your venting away from the office and in private. If you’re out in public just be aware that it’s a small world and you never know who is listening.
  • Be aware of non-verbals. When a colleague says something that is upsetting to you, you may not verbally respond but your body language and facial expressions can give away your true feelings even more than your words can sometimes. Do your best to control your emotions and reactions.
  • Master the art of listening. People often keep talking when they should be listening, or if they do get a chance to listen their thoughts are elsewhere. Learn to really listen and your contributions will be much greater.
  • Communicate your thoughts and/or ideas in meetings and conversations but always think before you speak. Don’t talk just for the sake of talking.
  • Consider asking your supervisor and/or other staff how they want you to communicate with them (i.e. email, IM, text, phone, in person), as everyone has a different preference.
  • Don’t be afraid of face-to-face communication or calling someone on the phone. Take the effort and walk over to someone’s office or desk- BUT do not linger outside their door or wait outside their office if they are busy or speaking with someone else.
  • Pay attention to the office culture and how staff communicate with each other. You might hear someone say something like, “this is the way we do things around here,” and the only way to learn how to do those things is to watch and listen.

Be Honest & Ethical

  • If you need a day off ask for it off as a vacation day instead of calling in sick, otherwise it could hurt you (i.e. You call in sick so that you can go to a Cubs game, and then later that night your supervisor is watching the replay of the game on the news and sees you sitting in the stands).
  • Don’t blame others for your mistakes. Take responsibility for mistakes you might make- No one is perfect.
  • Don’t use your employer resources (computer, fax, printer, copier, telephone, etc.) for personal use.
  • Don’t take home office supplies or hoard offices supplies at your desk.
  • If you find yourself bored or finishing assignments quickly don’t just surf the internet. Tell your supervisor and ask for additional projects/assignments.
  • Know all company policies and guidelines and adhere to them, especially policies on online use- Facebook, Twitter, and other social media.
  • Don’t disclose any of your employer’s confidential or proprietary information.

Email Etiquette

  • Always use proper grammar and check your spelling especially if you’re sending emails from your phone.
  • Do not type emails like you would a text message or IM.
  • Don’t be too informal, especially when you’re new. I’m still shocked when I get an email from a student saying just, “Hey.” A salutation such as, “Hi Laura,” should be just fine.
  • Don’t “reply all” on an email unless it is really warranted; if you want to say something back to the individual who sent the email reply to only them.
  • Always write a proper subject line, which is one that shows content and purpose (i.e. instead of just saying “Question” as a subject line use, “Question about the networking event tonight”).
  • Keep in mind that tone is very hard to translate through email, and often causes miscommunication.
  • Always remember that emails are never private, and can be found even after deleting them!

These are just some tips to keep in mind in regards to communication and ethics in the workplace but this list could go on and on. If ever in doubt about something, ask your supervisor or a colleague. And always try to make decisions based on integrity.

Career Advising Series: In-Person Networking Made Easier


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By Larry Jackson, NCA Assistant Director of Student Career Advising, serving students in McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Science and the science fields in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.


Larry is an assistant director of student career advising for WCAS students (in the sciences) and McCormick students.

The process of networking in-person can be an anxiety provoking task. Thoughts may arise on what to say, where to start and how to maintain contact. There are several ways to simplify the face-to-face networking process to make it easier for you. Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Identify your goal for networking. What is it you are hoping to gain from the networking interaction? Insight into a certain company? More information on a particular career path? Increased knowledge about a certain industry? It is important to consider your goal for the interaction as it will allow you to create questions that align with the information you are seeking.
  • Prospect contacts within your field of interest. Several opportunities exist on campus where you can connect with working professionals (e.g. employer information sessions, company meet and greets, and career fairs to name a few). However, there are many career paths that also have networking groups and professional associations where professionals engage with one another to discuss growing trends and initiatives within their field. Joining these groups and associations could be advantageous as you will be able to expand your network, and increase your knowledge base on your chosen field. An NCA Career Adviser can provide more information on networking groups and associations that align with certain career paths.
  • Create and share your professional introduction. A strong introduction about your professional interests, experiences and goals sets a positive tone for every networking interaction. Share your name and briefly highlight activities you have been engaged in that have developed your career interests and skills sets. Such activities could include coursework, student group involvement, work experiences, or independent projects to name a few. By discussing your activities, your networking contact will have a greater understanding about the depth of involvement in a chosen career field and can provide next steps on how to achieve your career goals.
  • Have 2-3 questions prepared to ask potential contacts. Having a preliminary list of questions prepared can help break the ice during networking interactions. Open ended questions are preferred as they help facilitate a dialogue between you and the contact. Questions like “What made you decide on this career,” or “what have you enjoyed most about your job” are some examples of how you can jumpstart a conversation.
  • Be “present” during the networking interaction. Asking questions and providing responses are only two ways to show that you are engaged in the conversation with your networking contact. Demonstrate non-verbal behaviors such as taking notes, smiling, and maintaining consistent eye contact as this will show the other person that you are enjoying the interaction.
  • Follow up after your discussion. It is incredibly important to maintain dialogue with your contact after you have both had the opportunity to share your experiences. Ask your contact for a business card and send a follow up email within 24 hours. Share with the contact what you enjoyed most about your conversation, and ask when might be a good time for another discussion. The more proactive you are in maintaining the connection, the more likely your contact will respond and express interest in meeting again.

These six steps can help you get your networking off to a smooth start. To learn more about the networking process, schedule an appointment through CareerCat with your NCA career adviser. We are happy to help!

Career Advising Series: Master’s students: What are your plans for after Northwestern?


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By Brett Boettcher, NCA associate director of professional program strategy & management, serving students in the School of Professional Studies and master’s students in The Graduate School.

BrettBeginning and completing a master’s degree at Northwestern can be an exciting, yet extremely challenging endeavor. You’ll spend many hours learning highly focused, specific information and special skills that will make you ready for the working world.

The question is then, when and how do you find the time to reflect upon and take action toward your first steps beyond Northwestern?

The answer to that question is not always an easy one. There are many variables that can make committing time to your career next steps challenging, including managing a busy class schedule and program. Another variable could be that your master’s program is relatively short in duration. Shorter master’s programs can put you in the situation of job searching closer to the start of your program. You might even have family commitments that require your attention.

The intention of this blog is to assist you in taking the first steps toward beginning career reflection and taking action steps toward whatever direction you intend to pursue after Northwestern.

Northwestern Career Advancement (NCA) is a great place to start. We are here to support and coach you through this, sometimes, overwhelming process.

NCA will guide you in crafting a timeline and plan customized to you and your situation. Within this plan we can assist you in translating your degree experience for employers. If you are seeking an internship or a job, we can help you to understand how your industry of choice can impact your timeline. We can work on skill development like writing your resume & cover letter, LinkedIn presence, networking, interviewing, and even negotiating job offers. You may visit our website to learn more about NCA’s services to graduate students.

There is no special secret to beginning your career planning and action steps, you just have to begin. NCA’s skilled counselors and advisers are available to assist you with your career needs. We’ve got you covered.

To schedule an appointment with an adviser or counselor, just log-on to CareerCat and follow the “request a counseling appointment” link. You’ll need your NetID and password if you’ve never logged-on to CareerCat previously.

Career Advising Series: Using LinkedIn for Networking and Finding a Job or Internship: Does it Really Help? (Yes)


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By Matt Formica, NCA Assistant Director of Student Career Advising, serving the following populations: Medill, IMC certificate, Weinberg undeclared


Matt works with students in Medill, IMC & Weinberg.

When I ask students whether they’re on LinkedIn, they often say something like: “Yeah, I created an account but haven’t filled out too much information and I don’t really know how to use it. Can it actually help me get a job?” The short answer to this question is “yes”-LinkedIn can absolutely help with your career development. One of the main ways in which LinkedIn can be useful when looking for a job/internship or exploring careers is by giving you access to over 100,000 Northwestern alumni, otherwise known as the “Northwestern network.”

You might’ve heard the popular phrase “Northwestern network” tossed around in conversations with parents, professors, or advisers. But what does that really mean? How do you access the network? And how can you leverage it to facilitate networking and increase your success when looking for a job/internship? These are all questions that LinkedIn’s Find Alumni tool (My Network>Find Alumni) helps to address.

The Find Alumni tool turns the “Northwestern network” into a concrete, searchable database of 100,000+ Northwestern alumni to connect with and learn from. With the simple click of a button, you can identify alumni working in industries and at companies you’re interested in. You can also search alumni by where they live, what their major was, what their skills are, and keywords within their profiles.

For example, looking to connect with a Northwestern alum who works for Google (358 results), PwC (170), ESPN (56) or AbbVie (221)? LinkedIn’s got you covered. Regardless of your career interests, chances are there’s an alum who shares those interests and would be willing to speak with you. Northwestern alumni are generally eager to “pay it forward” and connect with students for informational interviews. Don’t be shy about reaching out to alumni you find using LinkedIn (remember to send a personalized and professional message-not the generic connection request). Talking to alumni about their jobs and career paths and hearing their advice can help you form an effective job/internship search strategy and build relationships with people who can let you know about opportunities and vouch for you in the future.

If you’d like help optimizing your LinkedIn profile and using it to network and find jobs/internships, feel free to schedule an appointment with your career adviser!

SIGP makes it possible for students to pursue unpaid internships


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SIGP Orientation #4

Some of last year’s SIGP recipients at orientation in May 2015

For students who want to get valuable experience from an unpaid internship but need financial support, NCA’s Summer Internship Grant Program (SIGP) can help. Since 2007, SIGP has offered grants to NU undergraduate students to pursue summer experiences in fields that do not typically offer paid internships, ranging from $2000 in its first year to now more than $3000. A record-breaking 255 students received grants in 2015. Currently, NCA is accepting applications for its 10th SIGP class through April 5, 2016.

Past SIGP recipients have interned at media companies such as NPR and the Nancy Yost Literary Agency, nonprofit organizations such as the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless and GirlForward, and government institutions such as the White House and the Department of Education. (See photos of some of the SIGP 2015 experiences from our #ThankYouSIGP contest.)

SIGP helps students delve further into their fields of interest. “If it wasn’t for SIGP, I would not have been able to have this incredible opportunity to fall in love with magazine journalism and learn more about the industry,” a 2015 SIGP recipient and Medill student said.

SIGP students are also required to engage in career development through informational interviews, networking, donor appreciation, and more. Funding for summer experiences not only helps recipients gain career experience, but also fosters personal growth.

“My views expanded a lot this summer, and I got to work at my dream not-for-profit organization while having the financial means to do so,” a SIGP 2015 recipient and School of Communication first-year said.

Students selected to receive grants will be notified by May 9. Students are not required to have an internship secured in order to apply, but must secure an opportunity by May 30 if offered a grant. Previous SIGP recipients may reapply.

So, what kinds of applications get funded? When applying, students should reflect on their learning goals for their internships and connect their academic and personal experiences to the career field they want to pursue.

Upcoming (optional) information sessions are March 15 and March 29 from 5-6 p.m. at 620 Lincoln St. The presentation is also available to listen to and watch remotely.

Career Advising Series: Don’t plan for the rest of your life


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By Christina Siders, NCA senior assistant director, serving students in McCormick, Medill, SESP & The Graduate School.

christinaNot sure what you want to be when you grow up? Don’t worry about it. You heard me right. One of the top 5 things students stress about involves this hypothetical commitment to identifying a ‘forever career.’ Yes, some students have been on track to their dream job since they were little. However, the vast majority of students don’t even know how to identify their ‘dream job.’ The concept of a dream job is a lofty one, considering there are countless occupations in the world. Will you enjoy some jobs more than others? Of course. Does that mean that you have to find the 1 perfect job right after graduation? Of course not. Finding a career is a lifelong journey, and one that is defined by both successes and failures. For example, Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor b/c ‘he lacked imagination.’ JK Rowling was on welfare before becoming one of the richest people alive. Steve Jobs was fired from his own company at the age of 30, and it took almost 20 years for James Dyson to sell his first patent for his highly successful vacuum designs. The point is, it takes time to find work that drives you toward success. All you need to define right now is where you want to start.

Here are some practical strategies to get you one step closer:

1. Conduct informational interviews and job shadow as much as you can. The more people you can talk to, the more ‘aha’ moments you will have. Plus, you can learn from other people’s mistakes rather than making them yourself.
2. Do a career assessment. While it won’t identify your one perfect job, it’s a great starting point. A career counselor at NCA can help you figure out the rest.
3. Change the question. Instead of asking ‘What do I want to do with the rest of my life?’ ask instead ‘What do I want to try first?’ Then seek out an internship, a job, or volunteer in a relevant role.

Need help connecting the dots? Make an appointment in CareerCat with a Career Counselor. We look forward to meeting you!

Take the NEXT step: Job shadow a Northwestern alum this spring


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WinstonStrawn-2015Do you want to experience a day in the life of your dream job or even just explore a new career path? Participate in the Northwestern Externship Program (NEXT) 2016, where you’ll match with a Northwestern alum and shadow them on the job for a one-day “externship” this spring. You could connect with an NPR web developer, a Justice Department attorney, or a music librarian with the San Francisco Ballet (and much more)! Approximately 600 Northwestern alums at organizations in a range of industries and job functions across the U.S. and the world will participate in the program, co-sponsored by Northwestern Career Advancement and the Northwestern Alumni Association.

NationalGeographicHere’s how it works: Submit a resume and personal statement to hosts you would like to shadow on the NAA website by February 7, 2016. You’ll be notified if you are matched with an alumni host by early March, and then you and your host will set up a date for your externship that works for both of you sometime in the spring (generally between March 21 and April 22, 2016). You may complete one externship per year, and will need to provide your own travel and accommodations. At your externship you might take tours, sit in on meetings, help with projects, or conduct informational interviews with different company members. Current Northwestern undergraduate and graduate students are eligible.

Here’s what students have said about their past NEXT experiences:

“[My host] introduced me to so many people and really got me involved in the work that an engineer will do. It was an experience I will never forget!” – McCormick student, who spent the day with a Northwestern alumnus and product engineer at OXO.

“NEXT gave me the exclusive opportunity to see what a day in my life as a full-time employee might be like a few short months later. More than that, my alumni host impressed upon me the importance of having a meaningful life and career.” – WCAS & TGS recent graduate, who, during her time at NU, shadowed Northwestern alumnus and owner of Nieman, Inc. in Wilmette, Ill., a company that specializes in curriculum development for educational publishers.

“As a graduate student in neuroscience looking to explore options outside of academia, this was a unique opportunity to see the inner workings of a completely different industry.” – TGS student, who spent the day with Northwestern alumna and co-founder of Blaze Pizza.

“The NEXT program connected me with someone who was not just a mentor for a day, but someone who also became a great friend. We’ve continued to stay in touch and even worked together to launch a startup that was awarded over $60,000 and multiple entrepreneurship awards. My NEXT host helped to shape my professional career and prepare for life after school.” – SESP student, who spent the day with a Northwestern alumna from Deloitte Human Capital.

To learn more about NEXT, check out photos from our 2015 program or read some blog posts from past externships. View the list of FAQs and send any questions to Plus: See the complete list of year-round programs from NCA and the NAA designed to connect Northwestern students and alumni for professional development.

Career Advising Series: Five reasons to visit NCA during your first year


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By Jeff Jenkins, NCA senior assistant director and career counselor, serving students in the School of Communication, Weinberg, Bienen and School of Professional Studies.

JeffYour first year at NU is a time filled with new experiences. Some first time experiences may include: Your first NU football game; your first quarter classes and finals; and your first meeting with an academic advisor to talk about questions you may have about your major. As you settle in on campus, make career planning one of those first experiences.

Why would you come to an office called Northwestern Career Advancement (NCA)? Isn’t NCA just for students far along in their college career? Here are five reasons why you should visit us during your first year on campus.

First, many students come to campus undecided about what major to choose. Even if you have declared something upon admission, once you’ve taken classes, you may wonder if the major is “right” for you. This can be a good time to assess and consider what options are open to you. Meeting with a career counselor will help guide you to better understand your interests, values and skills and help you ask yourself important questions to start your journey.

A second reason to meet with NCA is to help you explore your options. Now that you’ve learned more about yourself, explore by taking different classes in diverse majors and minors. You may discover new academic areas you had not considered. Furthering your exploration may lead to questions about careers. A career counselor may suggest exploring your interests through student organizations, on-campus work or volunteering. Not only will you be exploring interests but you will be gaining new skills. This may lead to another question, what to do this summer?

Through working with an NCA (counselor/adviser) we can help you decide what will be a good first step for your summer. This is the third reason to engage with NCA. Maybe you are exploring options such as research, study abroad, part-time work, or an internship. NCA can help clarify your options and create a plan.

Now that you have created a plan, a fourth reason to engage with NCA is to act on your decision to gain experience.  There is a continuum of experience and most students are familiar with only internships. However, you can gain experience through a variety of opportunities.  Some examples include informational interviewing and job shadowing. Informational interviewing involves locating professionals in an area of career interest and asking questions related to various aspects of their experience. Job shadow experiences (like NEXT), allow you to make arrangements to observe and interact with a professional in a field of interest for a specified amount of time. NCA can provide you with a list of questions to ask, as well as help connect you with alumni.

Finally, a fifth reason to visit NCA, is for guidance on how to convert your H.S. resume to a college resume, as well as to receive feedback regarding your on-line profile(s). Reflect on the classes you’ve taken. Think about involvement in student organizations, volunteering, Dance Marathon, and so forth. All of these activities are examples of what you can include on your resume.

NCA will help you create a plan as you move forward during your time at NU and beyond. We welcome you to make an appointment to meet your career counselor or adviser and get started.

Career Advising Series: Marketing leadership experiences to employers


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By Maggie Smith, NCA assistant director of student career advising, serving students in Weinberg.

MaggieDo you ever find yourself wondering whether you should include your leadership experiences and campus involvement on your resume? Maybe you don’t think it is relevant to the internship or job that you’re seeking or maybe you worry that it isn’t “real-world” experience…

The answer is YES, you should include it!

What do employers tell us?

Employers across many industries tell us that campus leadership shows that an applicant takes an active role, is well-rounded, involved, dedicated, respected and trusted by their peers, and able to grow within an organization.

Leadership experiences can be some of the best skill-building opportunities, and they are not any less important than a job or internship. In fact, sometimes, you can learn more in a leadership position!

You might be wondering, what is leadership?

You don’t have to be the founder or president of an organization to be a leader. You might be an active member, and that can still be leadership. Do you feel that you’ve contributed to your organization or to the Northwestern community? If yes, then you’re a leader!

Leadership experiences might include being a member of an advisory board, Peer Adviser, Family Ambassador, Resident Assistant, fraternity or sorority member, treasurer for an organization, committee member, student-athlete, or volunteer.

How do you market your leadership experiences to a potential employer?

Focus on transferrable skills!

What is a transferrable skill?

A transferrable skill is a skill developed in one situation which can be transferred to another situation. You often develop these skills in a student organization or a leadership position, and they are easily transferred to a professional setting. Transferrable skills are common qualifications for any internship or job across many industries.

Common transferrable skills include:

  • Analytical skills
  • Communication (written and verbal)
  • Critical thinking
  • Initiative/self-starter
  • Leadership
  • Project management/organization
  • Technical and design
  • Research and development
  • Team or group work
  • Multicultural competence

Think about what the specific skill would mean to an employer: What does it mean to have strong communication skills or to be a strong team or group member?

Once you’ve defined the skill, begin connecting the skills to your leadership experiences. Think about situations where you may have demonstrated these skills: What situations did you encounter as a Peer Adviser that demonstrated your analytical skills? How did you contribute to a team or group as a member of your school’s advisory board? How did you demonstrate communication skills as a student-athlete? How did you develop organizational skills as a committee member for Dance Marathon?

Now that you have identified your transferrable skills, the final step is articulating them in a professional way. When describing your experiences on your resume, keep the formula ATR in mind for developing strong bullet points: Action, Task, Result.

  • Address the transferrable skill by selecting strong action verbs that convey the skill to the employer
  • Be specific
  • Focus on outcomes and results: What did you accomplish?
  • Focus on the purpose of your work: How did it contribute to the organization or Northwestern?

Let’s see the difference that a strong bullet point can make in marketing your leadership experiences to a potential employer:

Option A:

  • Worked on a team to plan events.

Option B:

  • Collaborated with a team of 6 people to coordinate quarterly campus-wide events that connect Northwestern alumni with undergraduate students.

Option B tells the employer that you know how to work on a team, you’re able to coordinate events, and your work has a positive impact on the Northwestern community.

Identifying what you’ve accomplished and what you have to offer is a critical element of networking and interviewing for internships and jobs. There is something to be gained from every experience. Be proud and confident about your leadership experiences and their relevance to your future!

How to go abroad for free: Securing and funding an unpaid internship abroad


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Written by Emery Weinstein, a WCAS senior studying health policy and sociology, and a 2015 Summer Internship Grant Program recipient, during her summer in Paris.

I am currently spending the summer in Paris, France working on a paper for the Health Division of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Here, I can meet people from all over the world, learn a new language, and, most importantly, eat “fromage.” Snagging an experience like this is within reach; however, finding a summer internship in another country is difficult and travelling abroad for an unpaid internship is expensive. Here are some tips for securing that summer internship in the city of your dreams.

  1. Do proactive research

Figuring out your summer plans is difficult so it is important to do some research to figure out what you want to do.  Brainstorm your personal interests, professional goals, and workplaces of interest with everyone you know. Try to think of people you admire professionally and go to the office hours of the Northwestern University professors whose classes interest you. I think the best “networking events” come from meeting people organically through attending speaker events or club meetings related to an area of interest that you both share. This will automatically demonstrate a sincere interest in this field and will give you something to connect through. Do research on the internet to find out what kinds of jobs exist in an industry of your choice. Talk to your college advisor, your grandparents, past coworkers, with your professors in order to get more ideas about what others have done and do. Think about what your strengths are and your past experiences so that you can consider how this might lead to other opportunities. This will help give you confidence in figuring out your summer plans. From this research you can begin to think of the kinds of opportunities out there.

  1. Be bold and reach out to people

Connecting with people is a great way to learn about new opportunities. However, it is always important to do so with grace. Ask for an informational interview. An informational interview is held in order to find out more information about a company, industry or position. Reach out to people for informational interviews to learn more about what they do and their professional background. (Tip: Do this whenever you meet someone interesting. When you are looking for jobs in the future it will come in handy to have established a relationship with these people or at least to be able to refer to a past conversation you have had.) You can attach your resume to this e-mail request to provide some background information on yourself. Talk to people who are doing interesting things and prepare questions. If you have worked on a project recently in their field, bring it up during this conversation. If you read a paper that they wrote that interested you, also bring that up. You can tell people what you are interested in and ask them if they know anyone else who might be able to talk to you and give you another perspective.  Also, if they do interesting work, ask if you can help out somehow. You may be able to work for them either formally through the company or organization they work for or informally through the creation of an independent research project or shadowing. Do not be afraid to tell people if you have an idea that could use their help and the resources available, that I will discuss next, through your university to make it happen. Remember that you have plenty to offer and plenty to learn.

  1. Find partners

There are organizations out there who have similar goals to yours and who fulfill their own mission by helping you. Work with them to create a win-win situation! These organizations may help you find your summer plans and can help provide financial support for your travel budget. Some helpful resources for finding internships and fellowships abroad are the Office of Fellowships and Northwestern Career Advancement (NCA). NCA offers the Summer Internship Grant Program (SIGP) which may support anything from a research project in Argentina, an internship in London, or your dream of filming a documentary in Turkey. Northwestern departments related to international topics are the International Program Development (IPD) and the Buffett Institute. Also, Undergraduate Research Grants are available through many departments. You can turn virtually any research question into an independent research project for the summer. I know of people who have used these to do anything from researching health care coverage in France to the impact of rap music. Talking to professors in any department in the field of your interest can help you narrow your focus. Talking to librarians at University Library can help you find background research for your grant proposal and research paper. Talking to research advisors in the Office of Undergraduate Research can help guide you and help perfect your grant proposal. These grants can help financially support your summer of research abroad. These organizations are available to help you find and fund your internship abroad.

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

You are a student and people like to help students. Our university has many resources available. If you reach out to an organization and share with them your summer plans and your qualms, you may get the help you need. If something does not work out the first time: try and try again. If you come across a barrier think of the different departments that are staffed with professionals available to help you. An organization that helps connect students with international programs may not outright say on their website that they offer funding for internships abroad but you should reach out to them for this sort of support. In your request make sure to be a valuable asset to them in return.  You may offer to blog for them, take photos for their website, and promote the mission of their organization through your work in return for some financial support for your budget. Be creative, helpful, open and flexible in your request. There are many resources out there that are willing to help you have the best summer of your life.