F/ASIP IAP Symposium 2013

Lily Zhang, Career Assistant, GECD

On January 31 and February 1, 2013, the Freshman/Alumni Summer Internship Program (F/ASIP), run by Global Education and Career Development (GECD),  held a full-day symposium to provide participants with a large portion of the program’s career development curriculum before the start of the spring semester.

F/ASIP allows MIT freshmen to develop competencies in career exploration, communication, professional etiquette, and internship search skills. This graded course teaches students how to acquire internships for the summer after their freshman year and to complete them successfully. F/ASIP seminars begin during IAP and continue throughout the spring semester, with internships in the summer between freshman and sophomore year.

Students at Symposium

A total of 75 freshmen, eleven GECD staff, seven MIT alumni and MIT librarian Howard Silver participated in the F/ASIP IAP Symposium. Overall feedback from staff and students was positive.

The three features of the symposium that students found most helpful were:

  1. The presentation of online resources such as the Institute Career Assistance Network (ICAN), Hoover’s, and LinkedIn.
  2. The opportunity to hear from and network with MIT alumni at the panel and networking lunch.
  3. The time to reflect and write down their short- and long-term career goals.

F/ASIP students responded enthusiastically to the alumni panel. From the 54 survey responses, 98% of students stated their confidence in interacting or networking with alumni and understanding of the career development cycle as a lifelong process was stronger or much stronger after attending the panel. Additionally, 96% of students found the opportunity to talk with MIT alumni and GECD staff helpful. After a session titled “Exploring Possible Careers,” introducing students to online library resources, 91% rated their ability to use online resources, such as Hoover’s, to learn more about specific companies and industries as stronger or much stronger.

Students were also taught the importance of goals in career planning in the session titled “Planning Your Career Direction” and responded positively, with 73% stating that the seminar helped them to understand the importance of writing down goals and a strong 94% of students agreeing that the seminar helped them to learn how to write SMART goals. The last two sessions, “Landing an Internship” and “LinkedIn Lab,” enjoyed similarly positive feedback with 95% stating they had a better understanding of how to use online resources to find internships and 90% of students agreeing they had a stronger knowledge of LinkedIn.

Based on these encouraging student responses, the F/ASIP IAP Symposium was judged a success and will continue to be incorporated in the F/ASIP curriculum.