Obtaining an internship can require a significant amount of your time. But, given how important an internship experience is, consider it an investment in your future! To help you with this process, we have outlined below some next steps. Where applicable, we have identified resources underneath each task to assist you. Many of these resources may be found on our web site.
In addition, Career Center counselors are able to help you with this process.
To help you get the most out of your internship search, we encourage you to consider the
following issues and write down your responses.
Some preliminary questions…
1. What career field(s) would you like to explore through a summer internship?
The following resources can help you answer this question:
2. Are there specific skills or abilities you would like to develop?
3. Consider geographic and transportation issues.
a) Where will you most likely live this summer? __________________________________
b) What is the largest city/town to which you could commute? ________________________
c) What type(s) of transportation is/are available to you? ________________________
4. Given your financial situation, what options are you able to consider?
___ paid internship
___ volunteer internship
___ combination of a paid job & volunteer internship
5. Most internships are competitive! How competitive a candidate are you. The more factors you are able to check off below, the more competitive you are.
6. Write a draft of your resume.
7. Depending on your level of experience, your field of interest and your geographic location, we recommend that you develop a prospect list of 15-30 organizations and/or opportunities. The following strategies and resources will be helpful to you in this process.
a. Start by asking family, friends of family, acquaintances, Hamilton faculty and/or alumni if they know of organizations and/or opportunities that meet your criteria. Approximately 60% of Hamilton students find their initial Career-Related Experience through personal contacts.
b. Determine whether there are on-line internship listings that will be of help to you.Check listings in HamNET.
c. Consider sites where Hamilton students have interned in the past
d. Use on-line resources (i.e., CareerSearch*, Google, Chamber of Commerce) to identify organizations in your field and geographic area of interest.
* Career Search is an on-line, searchable database of 4 million+ organizations. Although it does not provide a list of internships, it can be an invaluable tool to help you identify organizations with potential opportunities.
e. Visit the websites of those organizations and/or contact them (call or email) to inquire about Career-Related Experience/internships.
8. Research each organization on your list; visit organization’s web site, talk and/or meet with staff working at the organization.
9. Based on your research, write a cover letter that is tailored to each specific internship employer/opportunity. See samples letters in back of this packet.
10. Make an appointment to have a Peer Advisor review your application materials.
11. Send required application materials well in advance of deadlines.
12. If you have not heard back from the organization within 7-10 days after the application deadline, we suggest contacting them by phone or email to make sure your materials have been received and to request an in-person or phone interview. However, you should not follow up if the organization has specifically stated that they do not wish phone calls.
13. Prepare for your internship interview by reviewing the interviewing page on the Career Center web site.