“I can’t get a job without experience and I can’t get
experience without a job”.
“This entry-level job wants me to have two years of experience;
so much for entry-level”.
– do these sound familiar?
Related work experience is something employers and graduate schools repeatedly look for on a resume as it allows you to stand out from the crowd and helps you reinforce or redefine your career goals. Regardless of the field that you plan to pursue or the economic circumstances impacting the job market, it takes experience and education to embark on your career path.
So how can you get experience while you’re trying to get an education? Combine them!
Experiential Education allows you to gain work experience while still a student. At La Salle, there are many options available for gaining valuable experience before you graduate.
- Cooperative Education (Co-op)
- Summer Jobs
- Student/Faculty Research
- Service Learning/Volunteering
- Other Ex Ed Opportunities
Cooperative Education – Co-op
A co-op allows you to work full-time for a 3 – 6 month period, gain valuable experience in a pre-professional position related to your major or career interests, receive academic credit towards your degree, and earn an hourly wage to help offset college expenses. Full-time, undergraduate, day students in the Schools of Business and Arts & Sciences are eligible for co-op assignments. Additionally, The La Salle School of Business offers a special “Business Scholars Co-op Program”.
Co-op assignments may involve full-time employment during a Fall or Spring semester and thus require careful, advanced academic planning. Speak with a career counselor or your academic adviser during the early years of your academic career at La Salle.
Internship requirements vary slightly from one academic department to another. Internships are optional in most departments; however a few may require an internship for graduation (e.g. Social Work). You will be expected to work part-time between ten to fifteen hours per week in a position directly related to your major. Academic credit is offered for internships that are approved by your academic department. Many internships are non-paid; but occasionally an employer may offer some compensation (e.g. a stipend, transportation expenses). You should meet with your academic adviser, departmental internship coordinator, or a Career Services Counselor for more details on internships
Internship opportunities are posted on explorenet.
For most students, the summer is a popular time to secure a job. Usually one that pays fairly well so you have expense money for the school year (or at least the Fall semester). Or helps you get that killer tan at “the shore”. Or it may be the only time your schedule will allow for working.
Let Career Services help you get a summer job that provides experience related to your major and/or career interests. You may even be able to continue working part-time during the academic year (class load permitting) and possibly receive academic credit. Don’t forget to check explorenet for opportunities. Make an appointment with a counselor, today.
“There is nothing like undergraduate research and the validation it offers the students who participate.” Dr. Thomas Keagy, Dean of La Salle’s School of Arts and Sciences.
The undergraduate research program is open to all majors in Arts and Sciences, Business, and Nursing and Health Sciences who have at least a 3.0 grade point average. For more information visit the Undergraduate Research website or contact Dr. Judith Musser.
Participating in community service or volunteer activities allows you to experience the non-profit world and the various career paths in that arena. Just as importantly, you will also develop or enhance interpersonal, communication, and leadership skills while living a Lasallian heritage. For more information on linking community service to your academics, visit the UMAS Service Learning site.
More opportunities to gain experience
Depending upon your major, practical career-related experience is identified under a variety of experiential learning programs – clinical rotation, externship, practicum, field experience. Regardless of what it is called, these experiences will provide you with valuable experience in and insight to potential career paths.
Check with your academic advisor or your departmental chairperson for more information.