I've been running an internship program with my company, Intern Queen Inc, for a few years now. I've been lucky enough to have several students intern with my brand over the years. Here are a few examples of what they've done to stay in touch and constantly stand out:
1. Keep Your Former Boss Updated. My best former interns stay in touch with me on a semi-regular basis. I hear from them approximately three times per year through email updates and even cards at the holidays. They let me know what they are up to, tell me about the projects they are working on, and ask how the business is going. Even when I cannot get back to their notes, I still read them and it keeps them fresh in my mind. Because they do such a great job staying in touch, I always have them in mind for job opportunities that come across my desk.
2. Send Holiday Notes and Thank You Cards. If you want to go that extra mile, make a note to put your former boss on your holiday card list and remember their birthday. I am always impressed when I get a card in the mail from a former intern over the holidays or on special occasions. We don't get too much by regular mail these days so it's a very good way to really stand out. And of course, we all know to send actual Thank You cards after the internship instead of emails.
3. Don't Loose The Contact - Ever. This might sound drastic but you should be in contact with former bosses...forever, really. You never know what projects might come up, what company you will end up at, and when you paths might cross again. My best former interns keep me posted as they get jobs, change jobs, and get promoted. They always think about ways that we can work together, share information, and continue to network. I've had former interns go on to work at recruitment companies, ad agencies, PR companies, magazines, and more. The best former interns are still in touch - sometimes years after leaving the internship.
4. Share Information. No matter when you complete your internship, you should always have your former boss in the back of your mind. Always think, how can I add value? Last week, I have one former intern send me a press release on how Facebook is creating a job board. This is a great example of someone who clearly had a note in the back of her mind to send me anything relevant to the career space that she found interesting. I've had former interns send me press leads, introduce me to interesting people they meet, and email great articles they've read.