Ryan Zatcoff, TMU contributor and senior at Hofstra University

The fall semester has finally concluded, and I am enjoying my final winter break as a college student! As much as I don't want college to end, I am more than ready for the next chapter of my life. 2012 is definitely going to be a year of change, and I am looking forward to finding out what it will bring. Before I graduated I knew that if I had the room in my schedule, I wanted to intern one last time before I entered the "real world." I've always known that I wanted to be involved in the arts. However, it was my first year at Hofstra that I discovered how I could turn this passion of mine into a career. At Hofstra, students are encouraged to intern and gain real experience. Since my freshman year I have interned for two incredible companies and will be starting a new internship at the end of January. One of the questions I am most frequently asked by underclassman and graduating high school students is how I got these internships. Truthfully, there is more than one thing you need to do to get internships, but today is your lucky day! I will give you an inside look on how I, someone with no prior internship experience, managed to graduate with three internships. The first internship experience I had was during the summer after my sophomore year of college. I knew that I wanted to work for a small company where I wouldn't be overwhelmed but would be able to learn a vast amount. One of the first things I did to get this particular internship was network. Networking is extremely important when it comes to applying for internships and jobs. When you make a contact in the professional world, it's crucial to keep in touch and stay connected to those people. You never know when someone you meet might be able to help you later on down the road. For my second internship, I did my research and found information regarding an internship fair in New York City for performing arts companies seeking student interns. I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to not only meet professionals in the theater industry but also hopefully make an contact that could lead to a possible interview for the internships that were available. It was at this internship fair (A.R.T Internship Fair) that I discovered the TheaterMania internship opportunity. If it weren't for the research I did and the A.R.T Internship Fair, I would not have known about that opportunity. As a full time student, it's difficult to find time in your schedule to fit in an internship. However, I was lucky enough to have enough room in mine to apply for internships for the spring. First, I knew I needed to update my resume. I put my resume together and then I brought it to different people to get advice as to how it could be improved. Most universities have a career center which has counselors that specialize in helping students start their careers. This includes assisting students with assembling a professional and effective resume. After I did that, I printed out copies for my marketing and drama professors to obtain their professional feedback. Once I was confident in my resume, I applied to my top theater companies and organizations in the city. I am very excited for my internship next semester, and I know that networking, doing my research, and updating my resume all contributed to a successful interview, which lead to being offered the internship. One last piece of advice I can offer anyone going through internship interviews is to be yourself, be dedicated, and be determined. Employers are looking for enthusiastic candidates who are self-starters and have a sense of humor. Don't be afraid to show your personality in your interviews, because it's those candidates who stand out and make a true impact.

Quote of the Week:

"Opportunity is not a lengthy visitor."

Stephen Sondheim, Into the Woods