As a graduating senior, OCR seems very distant to me even though it was only a year ago that I was partaking in it. What is OCR? Well, it’s officially called on-campus recruiting, and it happens the second semester of your junior year – it’s the time when college students try to find summer internships and make sure the money their parents put into their education is worth it.
Students wear suits, buy resume portfolios, and go straight from class to company information sessions in order to land their dream summer internship (traditionally an 8-11 week stint) at a company of their choosing. I’m sure many of you have heard rumors about how stressful it can be – how grueling it is to balance your schoolwork and prepping for interviews, how competitive it can be to get a job, and how nerve-wracking the whole process time can be. And if you have heard rumors of it being stressful, then you’re right – it is. It’s a time when you’re trying your hardest to prepare to get a summer internship but then realize that your fate is ultimately in the hands of the recruiter. Sounds a little bit like college recruiting, yeah?
But that’s the thing – it’s not. Because unlike college recruiting, spring internship recruiting at Penn is full of resources: from the official resources (like Penn Career Services) to unofficial resources like upperclassmen, professors, and alumni, Penn students have so many resources at their disposal. I can’t tell you how many Professors and upperclassmen have opened their own networks up to me to connect me with their colleagues or friends. And that’s the incredible thing about Penn – people are here to help you. People want to see you succeed. And I can’t imagine going through OCR in any other way :).