Faculty Recruiting Support CICS

Internship Alternatives

6 Ideas to Build Your Resume

How can you advance your professional development over break? There are plenty of opportunities to grow as a professional, learn, and create. As recruiters and hiring managers look for more talent, they know the situation all too well. What they want to see is how you stayed active during your extended break. 


Side projects are one of the best ways to learn and do something that matters to you. Use your dream job as a guide and create a project that will help you gain skills and experience that you can add to your resume and talk about during interviews. Open source projects have the added benefit of scale, collaboration, and professional code reviews. Get going with GitHub. Create a personal website or join efforts computing against COVID-19.  Try Kaggle competitions or give your startup venture idea a go.  

Join the UMass Developer Student Club, a student-lead club where you can build your skills in web and mobile development, and contribute to open source projects at the same time.


Many companies are still recruiting! We are here to help you with behavioral and technical interviews. Check out Slack for behavioral interview examples from our Career Developers. Form a habit of practicing algorithms with 30 Days of Coding, a student project that suggests videos, GitHub repositories, and practice questions. Work on your job search strategy. or improve your LinkedIn profile.  

Look out for employers on Career Fair +.  You can start getting ready for these fairs now.  Review your resume and practice an elevator pitch.  Also take a look at the employers who came to our Tech Fair and Partner Mixer to see if they're still hiring.

We are here for you throughout the break!  Please make an appointment with us to prepare for your next steps in the job and internship search.

Schedule Zoom Appointment


If you haven't tried online classes from edX, Udemy, and Coursera, you're missing out. Not only are most of them free, but they can also be completed at your own pace. Several include projects and can help you specialize. We also recommend MIT's Missing Semester to gain critical skills and knowledge in different areas of informatics and CS.  Advent of Code is another great way to practice daily challenges for the month of December.  There are also countless webinars that can help you learn about computer science research and industry applications. Don't forget to read too!


Even though we are all social distancing, networking is still possible. Consider trying your first informational interview, maybe with one of your lucky classmates who got an internship.  Most people get jobs through a connection, and often not their closest friends and family. Take advantage of our enormous and generous alumni community, including using ConnectUMass, to explore career options and maybe even find a mentor.


Undergrads can gain real research experience with PhD mentors are part of our popular Undergraduate Research Volunteers (URV) Program. You can also impress recruiters by "Computing for the Common Good."  Check out Develop for Good and hashtagcharity or get involved teaching the next generation the joys of coding, with programs such as Microsoft's Technology Education and Literacy in Schools (TEALS).

Volunteer to work for a local organizations. Network with family friends or local businesses to figure out which small businesses are in need of technical help, ranging from backends to e-commerce websites. Practice your skills while gaining valuable professional experience.


If earning money is one of your goals, you have many options. You can try freelancing or microgigs. Students often overlook the non-technical skills needed to succeed in a job, from customer service to business basics. Employers will appreciate your initiative and you can do projects that have real-world applications.  There are also paid opportunities for tutoring CS through outlets like Chegg.


Ready to jump into the job search over break?  In addition to scheduling an appointment with us, keep an eye on our #hot-jobs and #hot-internships channels on our CICS Slack Community.

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