Irish Internships and Volunteering during Covid
For many students and recent graduates, finding Irish internships and volunteering during Covid has proven to be a formidable task. With impending budget cuts in businesses big and small, the standard sources for summer gigs have all but dried up. On top of this, volunteering, specifically in-person opportunities, faced a four month setback, eliminating the sole universally accessible resume booster. Consequently, countless young people right now are emerging from quarantine expecting few to no options for their summer. While many might take the season as a time to decompress, others are looking to use it more productively. Here are a few potential ways to make this summer more than just a blank space on your CV:
Looking for something a little more long-term? Check out our tips on finding jobs in Ireland!
Covid Interns seeks to connect two of the pandemic’s many hard-hit groups: small business and students. Started by two recent graduates of Trinity’s business school, the non-profit asks its volunteers to send a CV and state their areas of interest/availability. The service then adds these details to its database of candidates. When companies request volunteers, the group then searches its database for a suitable candidate and sends along their CV. With 100+ businesses and volunteers already signed up, Covid Interns provides a promising, service-oriented way to find the perfect internship!
Dublin’s Volunteer Centre, a local branch of the National Volunteering Service, has scores of valuable projects to explore. Specifically in need of manpower, the city’s charity shops have been hit by a sharp decrease in volunteers. Organizations like Oxfam Ireland and Vincents typically rely on mature volunteers to work their shops. But, with Covid’s increased risk to people of a certain age, young adults are being sought out to supplement. While the service has a registry of plenty more organizations, these shops suit students looking for work experience. Who knows, maybe the time you spend in the shop will eventually get you a paying job! The demonstrable retail experience you gain may mean no more noodles and energy drinks for you…
This may seem counterintuitive, but often websites like Indeed or Jobs.ie are simply wasting your time. Your resume or CV can be swept away in the wave of applicants. Frustrated by a lack of progress, many young people cut out the middleman and contact businesses directly. Most local establishments run pages on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Why not direct-message your favorite cafe in a nice, short note asking if they’re hiring? The worst thing that happens is they say no, but, regardless, it sets your candidacy apart from others’.
For students looking to graduate with contacts ready to assist the first steps of their career, LinkedIn is a must. Currently, there are over five thousand entry level positions listed in the jobs section for Dublin alone! If you’re looking to maximize your use of the site, aim for a straight-forward, no “fluff” profile. In other words, try to make your online presence as concise as you can, while also highlighting your skills and accomplishments. For your profile picture, upload a professional-looking headshot (or, more likely, ask a family member to take one). Though you’re in no way entering a beauty pageant, it’s important to present yourself in the best light possible. This becomes important when seeking employment/internships, as you get a shareable link which takes employers directly to your profile.
Once you’ve gotten your account set up, connect with your friends, family, neighbors, and just about anyone you know! In no time, you’ll be scouring LinkedIn’s ever-expanding list of jobs.
Coming from outside the EU? Here is our guide for obtaining a work permit.