Internship allows Swinburne Sarawak students to experience real work environment and gain a competitive edge while studying. It’s done during study break for 8 weeks.

At Internship Host, students will be able to practise theories and case studies into real work scenario, thus able to adapt to the challenges and demands in the work environment.

Getting ready for an internship experience

  • A student selects a preferred internship host through his or her own search.
  • A student consults Employability team to identify a preferred employer partner as an internship host.
  • Employability team provides the student with careers advisory services.

Student responsibility in internship experience

  • Write a resume and a cover letter for the internship application.
  • Contact the preferred internship host as to obtain relevant information about the internship requirements prior to interviewing for the intern position.
  • Secure the internship by following-up with the internship host in a timely manner. We recommend the follow-up should be 6 weeks before the formal internship period/study break.
  • The internship must relate to an academic program.
  • A non-engineering student is expected to have completed and passed 12 core units which is equivalent to acquiring 150 credit points before applying for an internship by checking his or her enrolment status with the discipline leader.
  • An engineering student is expected to consult and liaise with the Industrial Placements Coordinator at the School of Engineering and Science for the compulsory completion of the unit EAT20008 Professional Experience in Engineering.
  • An engineering student who has successfully completed the unit EAT20008 Professional Experience in Engineering and he or she wishes to gain further internship experience through a non-assessed internship may apply for an internship application letter after the Employability team has verified the student’s unit completion status with the Industrial Placements Coordinator (Engineering).
  • An international student is allowed to do internship in Malaysia under an active student pass/visa.
  • The international student must send a copy of active student pass/visa to the internship host together with a reviewed resume, a reviewed cover letter, and an internship application letter.
  • The international student must be responsible for his or her own student pass/visa validity and must have it renewed in a timely manner by consulting the Visa unit.
  • Participate in and gain exposures to real work assignments and decisions.
  • Perform all tasks assigned to him or her to the best of his or her ability, to meet all standards of his or her work and to abide by policies, procedures and work schedules established by the internship host.

Internship Application

  • Student completes an Application for Status Letter.
  • The student is expected to send the internship application letter together with the reviewed resume and reviewed cover letter to the preferred internship host.

Internship Offer

  • A student who has accepted an offer from an internship host, or whose internship application has been approved by an internship host must immediately inform the Employability team within 5 working days after accepting the internship offer.

Internship Insurance Coverage

Internship Host Declaration

  • It is expected that the internship host to provide a safe work environment, meaningful industry-engaged learning, effective mentoring via a supportive line supervisor, a detailed orientation, necessary resources, training, and personal protective equipment, and local resolutions when work issues arise.

Internship Report (requirement for the Swinburne Emerging Leader Award)

  • The Emerging Leader Program provides recognition for the broad range of experiences and skills that you develop during your internship.
  • 2 weeks after the end of internship period, the intern is encouraged to submit an internship report including his or her evaluation of internship experience to the internship host and to Employability team.
  • The intern writes the internship report using STAR format. The STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action and Results.
  • The STAR format details activities and task that the intern has accomplished while doing internship and the results or the influence the intern has had on the internship host.
  • This step is applicable only to students who are interested to apply for the Swinburne Emerging Leader Award.

Alternative to Internship in Swinburne Sarawak – the Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Professional Placement unit

  • Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Professional Placement is a paid unit.
  • The tuition fee is equivalent to the cost of 2 elective units.
  • It is applicable to non-engineering students, who:
    1. have completed a minimum of 150 credit points
    2. are prepared to undertake 120-140 hours of tasks/projects related to course discipline for a workplace, either on site or remotely
    3. can manage the study plan to ensure it will fit in a 12-week period.

How to Self-Source a professional placement through Employability team

How to Self-Source a professional placement through Networking

  • Identify organisations you would like to intern for based on geography and transport.
  • Write a list of names, contact details, and websites.
  • Order the list of organisations from most preferred to less preferred where you want to be an intern.
  • Research the organisation websites in order of most preferred to less preferred and try to identify:
    1. if they have a department or a team that would best fit your course discipline and where you could apply your course knowledge and skills / experience that you may have to offer.
    2. name / job title of someone you could network in the organisations.
    3. annual reports or information about the organisations that confirm why you would want to intern with them such as what they do, how big they are, what clients they have, and note any new ventures or projects they are involved in.
    4. how they advertise their work opportunities and online applications.
  • Check with professional associations or industry directories to find lists of organisations.
  • Reflect on your experiences to date and do a check on what your skills and strengths are. Try to match yourself against the types of positions you will be applying for. If you are seeking work related to your studies, then think about practical assignments and technical skills you may have gained.

How to Self-Source a professional placement through Cold-Calling

  • In sales field, cold calling is a common technique involving calling potential customers to let them know about a product or a service.
  • In careers field, cold-calling is used to:
    1. Search opportunities that are not advertised.
    2. Tap into “hidden” job market or to gain early notification of opportunities before they are advertised.
    3. Explore details about career industry to gain tips and insights.
    4. Negotiate paid professional placement.
  • Before calling the organisations, practise your approach of cold-calling with friends, family, or career consultants at the Employability team.
  • When ready to call, as to build self-confidence, start with your less preferred organisation to intern with and work towards contacting your most preferred organisation.

Your Elevator Pitch in the Cold-Calling

  • Start with a short elevator pitch tailored to what you learnt from your research on each organisation outlining:
    1. what you could offer to an organisation as an intern with them e.g. course, skills, experience, interest, attitude, personal characteristics.
    2. ensure you know the details of when the professional placement would commence and finish.
    3. the professional placement can be offered either as paid or unpaid opportunity and requires 120-140 hours of experience. Number of days or hours per week are by negotiation with you and the organisation, and best to be discussed once an opportunity looks viable, but be prepared to raise your availability should it be necessary during this stage of the pitch.
  • Read and apply cold-calling script
    1. “Good morning. My name is ________. I would like to speak to the person responsible for recruitment in your HR team please. Thank you.”
    2. For more script ideas like this, check out these tips.
  • Have your updated and tailored resume handy in case you are asked questions about your experiences and be ready to send it as a follow-up to the call.
  • The quality of your call will increase if you are professional, polite, friendly, speak clearly, and you have outstanding level of knowledge about the organisation, yourself, and what you can bring to the organisation.
  • Be adaptive to fit your target people’s schedule and preferred way to converse. If they prefer an email, or sound busy and rushed, check with them to find a better time to call.
  • Be creative– if you have not found what you wanted, ask for the contact details of someone who may be able to help.
  • If the person you want to speak to is unavailable, leave a message or ask when the best time to call back is. If the organisation does not provide direct numbers, get an email address if you can.
  • Always leave them with your contact details so they can contact you later when time and work is available.
  • Be persistent and follow up. If someone said they would call you back but you do not hear from them after a week or so, give them another call. Chances are they have been busy and forgot to get back to you. They will probably be impressed by your enthusiasm in politely following up.
  • Cold calling will never be easy, but with confidence, politeness and persistence, it can make things happen for you.
  • Be prepared for a lot of ‘not interested’ or ‘sorry we have nothing’ responses. Don’t give up. You won’t know when a ‘yes’ will happen but if you give up, it will never happen.

Dealing with Self-Sourced Professional Placement

  • Q. Why do I start with contacting a less preferred company?
    A. By starting with your less preferred organisation, you practise your pitch in real time and gain valuable information to use as you work through your list to convince your most preferred organisation to offer you a professional placement. It usually takes several attempts to convince an organisation to offer you a position, even if it is unpaid.
  • Q. Instead of calling is it OK to e-mail them and ask if I can be an intern?
    A. Yes, it is OK to make this approach through email, however email is easy to “delete” without reading / responding. A call provides you with having a more nuanced discussion and learning more about the organisation and to provide more information about yourself to convince them that they need you interning with them. If you do email, provide your phone number, and let them know you would be interested in discussing over the phone, video conference call, or in-person.
  • Q. Isn’t there a risk a less preferred organisation will offer me a professional placement before I reach my most preferred organisation? And if so, do I have to take that offer?
    A. Yes, there may be a risk that an organisation lower on your list will offer you a professional placement. If you’re concerned they will make you an offer, then it’s probably a sign you couldn’t see yourself with them in the first place. Every organisation on the list should be an organisation you would want to accept an offer from. Having contacted an organisation and convincing them that you want a professional placement with them, it isn’t acceptable to tell them you don’t want the offer after all.

An Offer to start the WIL (Professional Placement)

  • As soon as you receive an offer, start negotiating and confirm on commencement and finishing dates.

Starting the WIL (Professional Placement)

  • The enrolment will be done for you and is the official acknowledgement that your placement has been approved.

Safety issue to take into consideration

  • Ensure any workplace is accessible by public transport.
  • Take extra care when working on night shifts.
  • Stick to well-lit roads with traffic, even if they are a longer way home.
  • Be aware of danger – don’t be distracted by talking on a mobile phone or listening to music in dark or lonely places.