Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

How to Search for Internships

This blog post was written by Peer Career Ambassador, Disha Sethi (’20).

Regardless of your class year, finding internships can be tough. It is an intensive process that
requires a sufficient amount of time. However to be efficient and ensure that you land your
dream summer internship, here are a few tips:

1. Research
Research does not mean you have to write a thesis paper on the perfect internship. It simply
means doing some soul-searching and understanding your interests so that you can narrow
down on what kind of internship you are looking for. Do you want to work in a non-profit? Or in a
retail company? Would you like to work in the operations department or in human resources?
These are all good questions to ask and will help you filter your search for an internship. Once
you understand the industry and department you’d be interested in, you can look for companies
that match those needs.

2. Utilize the Handshake Platform
Handshake offers a ton of internship opportunities which you can filter through according to your
interests. All you have to do is submit your resume and in some cases, cover letter, and your
application is complete! For some internships, you might see an “Apply Externally” button even
after submitting your resume through Handshake. This means that the company would like you
to complete an application on their website too. Don’t forget to do so since you would not be
considered otherwise!

3. Read the internship description
As appealing as it might be to simply attach your resume and hit the “Apply” button mindlessly, it
is important to understand what exactly you are applying for. All internships have a description
entailing what the internship is about and its duration. There is also a qualification section that
lists out what the recruiters are looking for in the candidate. If the internship is only for juniors
and you applied as a freshmen, it is unlikely that you will get the internship even if you have the
perfect GPA. If you are interested in say Company X and you found an internship that you do not qualify for
because of your class year, you can go on the company website and look for opportunities that
align with your skills. Most of the times, companies have sophomore or first-year leadership
programs that you can apply for. Note to international students: You should also look at whether
the company is willing to sponsor candidates or not.
By reading through the descriptions, not only do you understand what you are getting into, but
also realize if you are the ideal candidate or not.

Remember to be mindful about applying to internships. It can be demotivating to get multiple
rejections, but the key is to be consistent.