Gaining career experience during college

You know that gathering career experience during college is important, but do you know how to get started?  Check out the table below to learn general information about the different types of experiences available to you and find out how to get started.  For more information, please schedule an appointment with a Career Services staff member!


What is it?

How do I do it?

What will I gain?



Short-term, hands-on learning experience related to your major. May count as academic credit; may be paid or unpaid.

Attend a Internship Information Session and talk with your career advisor. Search for internships in Handshake. Talk with faculty about opportunities thay may know of.


Learn about and test-drive a job or employer. Gain relevant skills & knowledge, and develop as a professional. Gain valuable contacts and references in your field. 

Job Shadow

In-person observation of someone in a specific job or department. Ranges from a few hours to a full day. Not just for pre-health or pre-med students

Talk with a career advisor. Contact family, friends, & alumni. Use your network connections to find a job shadow opportunity.


Find out whether a career path is right for you and gain a realistic picture of a specific work setting. A chance to build your network.

Part-Time or Summer Job

A paid position that may or may not relate to your major or future career path.

See Handshake's part-time job listings. Attend UWL's part-time fair. 

Earn money, increase responsibility, and develop a variety of transferrable skills.

Undergraduate Research & Creativity

Develop your own research or work on a faculty research project as part of a team; potentially present and/or publish your work.

Visit Undergraduate Research and Creativity and talk with faculty about their research & opportunities for you to get involved. 

Develop communication skills, through writing, presenting, & collaborating. Enhance your critical thinking skills.

Student Orgnanizations

Find campus clubs/organizations related to your academic/career interests or that support causes you are passionate about.

Visit MyOrgs for more information on over 200 student organizations.  Attend involvement fest (fall) and/or WINvolvement list o UWL student organizations



Skills in leadership and teamwork. Taking on a role, serving on a committee, organizing a project or event, or being an officer are some ways to add depth to your experience.

Volunteer & Service Learning

Volunteer your time & talents independently, as part of a class, or as part of your involvement with an organization. Can take place locally or as part of a trip.

Visit the COVE in the Student Union for volunteer opportunities and check out Ugetconnected

Hand-on experience while developing empathy and gaining skills that will transfer into your future career.

Study Abroad

Take coursework or complete an internship in another country.

Visit Study Abroad (International Education & Engagement) to discuss programs.  


Expand your worldview, adapt to a new culture, & increase your independence.