Finding an Internship
What are you looking for in your internship?
You can base your search for an internship on many different factors. Some of the possible criteria are: specific fields, skills you want to utilize or gain, work style (office, outside field, independent), geographic locations, commuting options, finances, job market considerations, and whether academic credit is offered. You will want to think about these factors before you begin your search. Start by asking yourself the following:
- What are your skills, interests, values, competencies, background...?
- What motivates you? What type of experience interests you?
- What types of skills would you like to use and develop?
- What are goals for this internship? Are you hoping to receive an offer for a full-time job?
Career Services provides extensive online resources with information on occupations, majors related to careers, salary data, interviewing guidelines, resume examples, and more.
Researching employers will help you prepare to talk with employers during interviews and at career fairs to answer questions such as: What do you know about us? How are you qualified for this job? It also helps you determine if a particular position is the right fit for you.
Researching EmployersClick or enter to reveal information below
Some things you may want to research about an employer include: the organization’s products, services, mission, ownership (public/private), competitors, size, compensation, benefits, training programs, news items, current trends and issues, management, reputation, industry, organizational and financial structure.
By studying the job description provided, you can determine the required skills and experience needed, which key words and phrases you will need to incorporate into your cover letter and resume, and what you would be doing should you be offered the position. You can also use your research to anticipate questions an employer may ask during an interview as well as to formulate your own.
Our Career Coaches recommend the following resources to begin your research:
In an informational interview, you gather occupational and career information by talking to people who work in your area of career interest. You can learn the details about a specific job in a particular organization and develop contacts with professionals.
Informational InterviewsClick or enter to reveal information below
To set up an informational interview, first reach out to contacts in your professional and personal network and ask them to help you identify people you could speak to about your interests. When you call, introduce yourself and explain how you obtained their name and why you are contacting them, or ask your initial contact to make a brief email introduction. Once you've reached out, ask for an appointment to meet in person or to arrange a phone interview. Most informational interviews take about 15-20 minutes. Be respectful of their time. Arrive on time and dress professionally.
Prepare a list of questions before your meeting. In informational interviews, you are the interviewer so be prepared. Use your employer research to help create your questions. For example:
- What are the primary responsibilities of your job?
- What kind of education and skills are important for this type of work?
- Would you describe the types of things you do in a typical day or week?
- What do you like best about your work?
- What advice do you have for someone interested in your career field?
- Are there other people you could recommend that I talk to in your field?
- Create your own questions – what do you want to know?
At the end of the informational interview, shake hands and thank the person for taking the time to meet with you and sharing their insights into the career field. Don't forget to follow-up with a thank-you note within 24 hours.