Episode 1: The Value of Internships

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By Kylie Garrett

We have some exciting news here at PathMatch: we launched a podcast! Our very first episode of How They Got There! is out now with special guest Gary Lin, CEO of Litebulb, and former Facebook Software Engineer. Gary talks about his six internships in college and how they helped him land very competitive job offers.

As college students, there is a lot of emphasis put into grades. Often what you don’t see is all the preparation it takes to actually get your foot in the door in order to land an internship or job. In fact, many students don’t see how competitive it is to actually land jobs or internships. Below are just a couple tips from our conversation with Gary about what got him interviews, internships, and ultimately the job. 

1. Practice

Not only do you want to practice answering questions before an interview, but it’s also important to practice and build your skills. As a graduate of the University of Waterloo, Gary went through a five year program alternating between school and internships. “70% of the time we were doing our assignments at school and 30% of the time, we were preparing for interviews.” Additionally, Gary participated in several hackathons and projects to build skills to become a better candidate.

2. You need more than 1-2 internships these days

“The competition has just gotten substantially harder.” Gary shared that often students submit 150-200 applications and only get a few interviews here and there. What sets students apart is experience. As a Software Engineer, Gary stated that “internships, projects, hackathon awards, and tech competition awards, are core things that the team and I look at” when hiring. “Real work experience definitely trumps grades.” Don’t wait until your junior or senior year of college. Start early! The more experience you have, the better. 

As a former computer science student, Gary shares a lot of advice on tools and resources he used to get internships. To hear more tips and tricks from Gary, or if you’re an aspiring Software Engineer, be sure to listen to the full podcast episode here

Need help getting experience and building your resume? We’re here to help. Click this link to schedule your free consultation with PathMatch today!

Want more internship tips? Download the Pathmatch app to discover companies that match your interests, strengths, and goals! Pathmatch can help find the perfect career fit for you! 

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