If you are ambitious about a career in software development, your time as a college student is the best to start preparing in a structured manner.
Doing an internship as a college student opens a lot of opportunities and can help you shape your career in the software indsutry. But how to find internships as a student? Are you skilled enough? This article will help you navigate these questions and find the right internships and jobs at startups.
Learn something new
Your formative years as a college student gives you a lot of time and energy to absorb knowledge at a great pace. This is when you should start learning something new that is in-demand and has great opportunities in the industry.
The important part is to stick to one area (web development OR data engineering OR data analysis, etc.), and master it to an intermediate level.
Build a skill set
This builds on the previous point. Once you have started learning, build on it by adding relevant technologies and form a set of skills, or a tech stack as it is popularly known. Currently, MERN stack is in high demand and you can learn MongoDB, ExpressJS, ReactJS, and NodeJS to become a MERN stack developer.
Join developer communities
Find fellow students or junior developers learning the same technologies and be part of the thriving community. You can usually find them on Twitter, Showwcase, etc., and start building your online presence. This will be a great way to showcase your skills as well and build your network.
Build an online presence
Create more and consume less. This should be the mantra for any kind of learning and personal branding. It is good to get inspiration from other creators and keep learning, but invest the same amount of time, if not more, in CREATING content as well. Do not worry about similar content already existing. Add a personal touch to your content - blogs, tweets, projects - and explain how you went about creating it.
This will boost your presence in communities and people will know to find you for your niche. This is also a way for companies to find you too.
Upload projects, tweet tips and tricks, attend and host short webinars on How-To-Build-Something, etc.
In short, be out there, with quality content, and be consistent.
Find an early stage company
This is a cool way to make sure that you get into a startup. Startups are always ready to accept freshers since it is cost optimal for them, and there is also a great learning curve for the fresher/intern. Seed funded startups need to build fast, so they are more accepting towards a team that makes mistakes and learn from them.
Startup jobs will elevate your understanding of how fast-paced companies work and how to write code in real world environments. You will learn Agile development, team collaboration, understanding business and customer needs, and more.
Applying to these startups is relatively easier compared to bigger companies. You can find the founders on LinkedIn or Twitter and start a conversation with them. Approaching this way is called Cold Emailing, and is very beneficial for two reasons -
- You learn to approach anyone - this builds confidence
- You come out of your comfort zone
- You learn to market your skills
❌ Do not send out resumes directly when you reach out to executive level people in the company. They do not have time to read pages of resume.
✅ Instead, always highlight on how YOU can help them develop their product with your skills sets and show your interest by emphasizing that you WANT to join their team.
How to assess job readiness?
We have all been there. As developers, it is very common to feel unsure and nervous. But even without that, you cannot just go blindly in. You need to evaluate your technical skill sets and assess if you are ready to start interning.
Companies also hire based on what they can SEE, more than what you can just tell them on paper. This means there is a necessity for evaluating job-readiness in a comprehensive manner. If you are interested to know more on how you can assess this, keep watching this space for updates.
If you want a comprehensive roadmap to learn full stack web development along with mentorship and a community of learners, you can consider signing up for our course.
Meanwhile, keep learning and keep shipping 🚀