Tag Archives: internships

Improvising

Today didn’t go exactly as planned. Let’s examine, 500 Days of Summer style.

Another photo from Saturday since today was uneventful. My friend Young would make such a good blogger. He took photos of everything he ate. I did not.

Expectation: Arrive at work early. Sit at desk, plug in earbuds, watch Lynda.com tutorials for the software I’m learning for my internship. Get inspired. Write.

Reality: Arrive at work early. Notice other interns have nabbed all computers available. Employees stare at me, probably wondering what I’m doing standing in the hallway. Engineer leads me to an empty cubicle. Decide to leave and work from home/somewhere with free wifi.

Expectation: Arrive at home and get super productive!

Reality: Let’s just say that I am surprised I ever got my degree through a distance education program by working from home. Next time, library.

Expectation: Go to dentist appointment at 4 PM. Come home, traumatized, nauseous, zone out in front of a screen of some type.

Reality: Go to dentist. Get along super well with hygienist. Come home, put on gym clothes. Go to gym. Come back home, sign up for Lynda.com, write this blog post.

Things I loved today:

+ my outfit + finishing Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets + getting a compliment on my nail color + taking a nap + a grilled ham and cheese sandwich + sunshine + Buddy Holly – “Rave On” + feeling productive RIGHT NOW. See ya!

Happy

This has been on my mind the past couple of weeks: when I was a sophomore in college, my Interpersonal Communication professor veered from his lecture to teach our class a simple and powerful life lesson that has stuck with me for years: “Other people can’t make you happy. Only you can make you happy.”

Take this to heart. Make your own happiness, or it will be much harder to turn your life around when you are unhappy.

Today I loved:

+ waking up early again + reassuring discussions with my internship supervisor + sprouted wheat and raisin rolls with cream cheese + extra coffee (now I know why IT people love it so much) + reading and eavesdropping at my favorite coffee place + pear ginger iced tea + almost being done with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets + summer nights on my patio with wine + “Wreckage” – Jolie Holland + rose colored fingernails

Rainbow Roll

I got a phone interview for a reference internship for the Spring! I really hope I get it. BUT…It’s my first phone interview ever, and I’m pretty nervous. Luckily, I have some great advice to read before the interview happens.

One of the things I need to work on is my phone voice. I am phone shy, and this manifests itself in my voice. My boyfriend started calling my child-like tone the “rainbow roll voice” after he overheard me ordering sushi takeout one night.

Apparently I sound kind of like this:

Oy vey! I’m going to have to start practicing. Fun fact rumor: I once heard that Mariah Carey would go outside before her shows and scream as loud as possible to make her voice sound a little…huskier. The more you know!

Back to school essentials

Well, I have 3 days of school and another birthday under my belt. Tomorrow I have to start sticking to my study schedule. I also start my new internship tomorrow! I am a little nervous (naturally), but not too nervous because I’ll be at Chapman again. Leatherby Libraries was my home away from home during college, and I’m excited to be on the other side now.

Chapman University Leatherby Libraries

Image source

Amidst all the commotion these past few weeks, I’ve been able to do some reflecting on last year so that I can be better prepared to take on schoolwork this year. Here are some of the things I have or should have in my arsenal:

  1. Ginger Tea. I have been known to become so stressed that I make myself physically ill. Ginger tea helps tremendously.
  2. Ibuprofen. Staring at the computer for long periods of time gives me headaches.
  3. Healthy snacks. Sometimes, stress makes me want to eat. I like carrot sticks and hummus or apples and peanut butter.
  4. Two calendars. iCal has a great color-coding feature and task lists, but I like having a backup weekly planner in paper form for looking at things on the go, and to have if my laptop gets lost, stolen, or dies.
  5. USB drive.
  6. Legal pad or composition book. Sometimes, inspiration hits me when I’m not near my laptop. I’ll be taking a notebook to take notes on the first day of my internship tomorrow.
  7. Evernote. Helps organize thoughts and content from the Web.
  8. An internship or volunteer position. Check, double check.
  9. Short yoga workouts. Going to school full time online does not lend itself to good posture. I really need to work on that this school year.
  10. Post-it flags. For marking my readings without ruining my books. This usually translates into a better resale value. I use half.com to sell the textbooks I don’t want anymore and buy used books each semester.
  11. A de.licio.us account. Social bookmarking site that allows me to access my bookmarks on any computer. I don’t really use the social features.
  12. A PBWorks account. I use this to create a portfolio of all of my school and extracurricular work. It comes in handy when tailoring my resume to highlight certain activities. I just copy and paste the info I need from pbworks onto my resume.
  13. More “outside” clothes in my wardrobe than sweatpants. Still working on it…my “outside clothes” are starting to look a little weary, too.
  14. LeechBlock. My favorite time management/productivity tool on the Web.
  15. A newspaper subscription, Google News, and a radio set to my local NPR stations. News stories make for great icebreakers. I like reading the paper at the gym and listening to KPCC and KCRW on the way to the Garden library since my commute is so long.
  16. Google Reader. For keeping up with blogs, job openings, and upcoming professional association events. I’m so addicted to mine that I added it to LeechBlock.
  17. A list of goals to accomplish this semester. I am making one that I plan to put at eye level above my desk.
  18. An organized desktop. Both physical and virtual.
  19. Printouts of my greensheets. I like writing notes on them and checking off finished assignments.
  20. Career guidance books. To help alleviate my fear of adulthood sometimes.

It’s Sunday night. Forget about tomorrow and listen to The Temper Trap perform “Love Lost”. Be blown away by their ability to fill a room with such glorious sounds.

Get out of your head (but plan early) to make the most out of internship opportunities.

Library

My office.

This year has gone by fast. There’s so much more that I want to learn in school and I’m not sure I have the room to do it. My program puts a cap on the number of units a student can take, and in one year (21 units, give or take) I will be done.

My advice to new LIS students: start searching for internships during your first semester. If you’re on the fast track to graduation, you have no time to be scared. Search postings on your school’s internship listing website and start making inquiries. You can even submit application materials early, indicating that you’re eligible to intern after the following semester (for example). This shows initiative. If something looks interesting or exciting, apply, even if you aren’t sure it fits into your career plans. This past February (wayyy after I should have started searching), I saw an internship listing on my school’s website for a library at a botanic garden. I was so excited about it that I immediately applied, regardless of start date and eligibility (technically, my eligibility began this summer after taking 6 units of electives this past spring). I interviewed the following week, and landed myself a pretty nice, flexible internship (though records indicate that I’m a volunteer since I don’t get paid and I’m not getting school credit). I have learned more than I ever thought I would, I worked with Kiyomi who turned out to be a wellspring of great advice, and I’ve been there ever since. The commute is an hour each way, but I love it there. Your commute is another thing to consider: if you’re getting school credit, you are paying to do an internship (duh). But if you are not getting school credit, and you can handle long commutes (another thing I inherited from my parents who commute at least an hour each way to their jobs), you might consider taking that cooler internship in a not-so-local location than the boring internship in the next town over. It costs gas/public transit money, but it’s probably cheaper than a 3 unit class.

I should extend this advice to all LIS students. Begin your internship search far in advance of the semester during which you wish to intern. I say this because I am currently in a huge pickle. I found a great internship for which I must apply and interview. If I get the position, my potential supervisor and I have to submit a separate application to my school, then I have to register for LIBR 294 (Professional Experience). All of this has to be done before registration closes on August 15. I don’t have high hopes for my situation.

Why didn’t I start looking earlier? Hell if I know. I thought I had my bases covered in terms of library experience for the upcoming semester. But then it dawned on me how little time I have left in my program, and now I have an insatiable drive to beef up my resume.

Don’t do this to yourself. When in doubt, apply, apply, apply, even if you don’t think you can handle an internship in your schedule. In some cases, the hours are negotiable. The world is an unstable place. Prepare. Follow your heart, but remember to plan ahead.