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Many marketing industry experts recommend that students get an internship or paid work experience before graduating from their degree program. Gaining relevant marketing work experience can set you apart from others looking for entry-level jobs in the industry. Most universities have a career database that students can search to look for work options in their field that include part-time, full-time, internship and temporary jobs.
Checking for paid marketing job options first is probably the best strategy. If you can't get paid student work experience in marketing, then an internship is most likely your next best option. Since you may face strong competition from other students, especially if the same internships are posted with more than one college or university, it's best to keep ahead and check daily as well as apply immediately for internship opportunities. Remember that marketing is about promotion; you'll have to promote yourself as the best candidate.
Make sure that your resume lists specific projects from your education that would fit in with the type of marketing work experience opportunity for which you're applying. Also keep in mind that marketing is a results-oriented field that focuses on product, price, place/distribution and promotion. You should research the industry and decide which marketing activities you're the most interested in. The closer you can match your student marketing work experience with your future career choice, the better. Show future employers exactly how your training and education relates directly to what they need and you're more likely to be chosen.
No matter what type of marketing career you hope to eventually have, as a student or entry-level worker, you'll most likely be given lower-level, smaller assignments. Prove yourself in all of the opportunities you're given, whether the entry-level work is paid or is an unpaid internship. You may have to start in market research or as a management trainee.
Doing your best at student marketing work experience will help give you references that will hopefully be beneficial in finding full-time paid work after you graduate. It's a good idea when you're still looking for student work to think ahead and research marketing jobs in your area for after you graduate so you can see what areas have the most demand. For instance, if you there seems to be many ads for public relations jobs that will suit your graduate experience, consider working in this area.
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