Student Jobs/Intern Position

I am looking for a summer job. I am currently an industrial design student in Toronto. Although the course i’m taking hasn’t really taught us much ID. So I was wondering the best way to get a summer job at a design firm paying or not. Amy advise? Thanks

Hey ID85

In my experiences, I find that a lot has to do with timing. Right now (January) would be a good time to apply for summer positions. A lot of companies determine their budgets for the new year, and therefore may invest to hire someone . Other companies may hire because there is a lot of work coming in and they need an extra designer. Watch the market, do your research, and listen to what’s going on in the economy.

Other than that, applying to a design job is similar to applying to any other job. Cold-calling, by far, would be the BEST way to land a job, because you could find out a contact person (ie. designer) to deal with personally, rather than a person in HR who may or may not know exactly what you do and what your skill set is.

When you actually talk to a designer, ask them if they are hiring… and even if they aren’t hiring, ask them if they would be willing to help you out in becoming a better designer. Arrange meetings with him/her and develop a relationship. It’s always good to network (and esp. be nice to ANYONE you meet) because you never know who THEY might know…

You could also try the “drop-in” technique where you walk right in to a studio and ask if you could drop your resume/portfolio package to the designer. If the person at the front desk tells you that they’ll do it for you, then DON’T BE PUSHY, but ask them what the designer’s name is, so that when you do a follow-up call, you’ll know who to ask for.

These are only the ways that have worked for ME in the past. There was only one job that I got through a referral. The others, I had to go out and get myself. Stay determined, enthusiastic and passionate. Try not to be picky because it’s very competitive out there. Any skill you learn will help you in the long run, even if it’s a position where all you do is run an Blow-moulding machine, etc., etc… Just don’t settle on flipping burgers to make ends meet… come to think of it, I think I have flipped before… :slight_smile:

Anyway, good luck in you hunt.

Well I thought I would respond and thanks for the links and advise guys but, I am really not that experienced, I go to OCAD and the 1st year of school is basic design work nothing intense. So I have no design experience per say. I am looking for a way of just sort of getting an inside look at a design firm. I am not really sure if coldcalling would be beneficial and I can’t really send a resume. Any tips? Or should I wait a few years to look for an intern position. thanks again for the help!

Sorry to say but most internships require you to be at least a junior or senior. Its going to be tough but don’t let me stop you from trying. Cold call. When you call ask for advice rather than asking for an internship. Then ask how someone at your level could get an internship.

Be patient grasshopper…

I’m very familiar with OCAD and their curriculum… If you’re in your first year, then I’m assuming you’re in your foundation year. Hang in there!!!

If you are still in the foundation year, then I’d suggest that you wait til next year. Obviously, if you luck out and find an internship, then by all means, get as much experience as you can. But right now, it will be very difficult because without any industrial design related projects in your portfolio, chances are, no design firm will hire you, even for an internship.

What I’d suggest, though, in the meantime, is first, talk to the industrial design students (or even Industrial Design professors) at your school… ask them what you should be expecting for your next year…Second, attend the senior thesis shows (usually in April/May) and see the stuff they do… Lastly, GO TO DESIGN SHOWS and DESIGN LECTURES!!! Chances are you’ll meet someone who may help give you an insight to what working in a design firm is like…

Concentrate on building a solid foundation to your skills… even if it means you have to start with learning the basics again. I’ll tell you now, it only gets better…

Good luck and enjoy the ride!

great information… thank you