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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Ian Goldsmith, Ed Featherston, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan

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Do You Know What to Look for in a Great Internship?

WOBURN, MA -- (Marketwire) -- 02/08/13 -- Recent statistics on post-college employment estimate that roughly 50% of graduating students are still unemployed or underemployed, but the cost of school and need for a degree are higher than ever. Before you end up on the wrong end of that statistic, ask yourself: Are you are willing to work harder than ever now, to achieve success and results that would previously seem unattainable for you?

Carolyn Corcoran, assistant director of Misericordia University's career development center, offers her insight, "If a new graduate wishes to attain a job, he or she really needs to display relevant work experience; the students who still have not landed a job -- or sometimes even an interview -- six months to a year after graduation are usually those who did not do an internship or neglected to work at a summer job that was relevant to their major during their time in college."

According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE):

"New college graduates who had participated in internships did far better in the job market than their classmates who had not had that experience. In 2008 employers extended job offers to nearly 70 percent of their interns."

NACE also provided some of the best practices for internship programs in their book "Building a Premier Internship Program: A Practical Guide for Employers." Eight of those best practices are listed below:

1. Provide interns with real work assignments
2. Hold orientations for all involved
3. Provide interns with a handbook and/or web site
4. Have an intern manager
5. Encourage team involvement
6. Bring in speakers from your company's executive ranks
7. Offer training/encourage outside classes
8. Conduct exit interviews

When looking for the perfect internship, ask the employer if their internship program covers these basic practices.

The College Pro Painters Franchise Manager program is one such internship. College Pro provides you with the skills necessary to be successful in your future career endeavors, gives you a solid summer internship, and a chance to run your own business as a College Pro Franchise Manager.

The College Pro franchise opportunity is a one-of-a-kind internship that allows you, should you be selected, to run your own business. That means everything from training in the spring on all of the necessary aspects of running a business, to hiring teams of qualified individuals, to marketing your services to homeowners within your territory, and delivering quality work on schedule and within budget. If you are selected, you will receive training throughout the year in the form of an orientation and three training sessions during which a VP or GM will speak with the interns. Does this sound like a lot? It is. This is not your average summer internship. Only the best of the best can handle this opportunity. Out of 25,000 applicants, only 700 are selected to participate in the franchise manager program. If you think you have what it takes, listen to what one of the successful College Pro Alums has to say about this once in a lifetime opportunity. Tim O'Connor relates that while the work is difficult, the payoff is unimaginable:

"I was a College Pro Franchisee during my Junior and Senior year at the University of Washington. Now, long since graduated, I am still reaping the benefits. College Pro gave me the opportunity to graduate from college virtually debt free, with an unbelievable resume, incredible stories, great friends, and a phenomenal degree of tenacity and business acumen. To do all of this, I had to give up a certain amount of partying and TV watching. My school and social life were put under stress and I had to learn how to do more with less. I will tell you that learning this much, this fast, while trying to balance school, a social life, relationship, and life in general is a stressful endeavor. I know this may be scary but I promise you that no matter what the outcome of your Franchise, you will be a better person for having done it. I now work with a company that hires more than 1,000 students and recent graduates a year for entry level jobs here in the greater Seattle area. I know what employers look for. I can tell you with absolute certainty that the College Pro experience on your resume, and, even more so, in the interview, will truly be something that sets you apart and will land you the job."

Speaking with the knowledge of having completed the task already, Tim relates that although the student entrepreneurs will be busy and stressed, the eventual payoff is worth all of that stress and more. The College Pro franchise opportunity dwarfs any internship and has no equal or standard of comparison. It is not for everyone. It is for those who can see the big picture and are willing to do what is necessary to reach that picture. Do you have what it takes to become one of the elite? Do you have what it takes to become a College Pro Painters Alum?

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