How to find the right internship for you.
An internship must offer meaningful exposure to a professional, college-level career field. It should relate to one's field/major of interest and typically lasts one semester.
Internships can be...
• Paid or Unpaid
• For Academic Credit or Not-for-credit
• Part-Time (approx. 12-15hrs/wk) or full-time
According to the 2014 Internship & Co-op Survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 64.8% of interns were offered full-time positions by their employer.
Students are encouraged to participate in 2 internships during college, at least one by the end of their junior year.
• Explore career fields and find out what you like and don't like to do
• Gain relevant real-world experience to enhance your resume
• Observe professional people and behavior
• Develop networking skills and gain professional contacts in your career field of interest
• Be more competitive in your full-time job search and/or graduate school applications
• Connect classroom learning to practical applications
• Understand the relevance of your course work
• Increase your motivation to learn
• Use resources that are not available on campus
• Boost your maturity and self-confidence
• Enjoy a greater clarity about career decisions
• Integrate your faith and values with work
Are you looking locally, nationally, or internationally?
View the Rollins List of Internship Databases.
Download the Internship Tracking Sheet.
• Looking locally? Apply 2-3 months out from your desired start date.
• Thinking big (like New York, Boston, or D.C.)? Apply 3-6 months out.
• Is it highly competitive (like with the CIA)? Apply 6-9 months in advance.
If you need academic credit, keep in mind that you have 2 deadlines: the employer's and Rollins' registration deadline. Learn more about Academic Credit.
Be sure to follow up with each application within a week after you have submitted it.
• Choose 1-2 fields of interest and broaden as needed. Concentrating your search will help you find more results quickly.
• Apply for some internships that seem challenging and some that seem easily attainable.
• Apply for 3-5 when focusing on a small town/area, like the Winter Park-Maitland area.
• Apply for 5-7 when focusing on a large city, like Greater Orlando.
• Apply for 7-10 when focusing on a highly competitive area, like Washington, D.C. or New York City.
You will not always need to send a cover letter & remember, that references are included on a separate document from your resume.
Typically, you will need: a Targeted Resume, a Targeted Cover Letter, & List of 3-5 References.
• Use Book of Lists (email for login information) to locate the top companies in each industry within major U.S. cities.
• Research the industry on Occupational Outlook Handbook and review the company's website.
• Identify companies that Rollins alumni work for by using the
Careers By Major Alumni Report.
• Locate and connect with these alumni through LinkedIn and request an informational interview.
For some professions, there are fewer opportunities advertised on public job boards. For instance, shadowing opportunities or externships in the medical field.
• Ask your network (i.e. friends, family, professors) who they know who works in your field of interest in the desired geographic area for your internship. Have them to connect you with that individual.
• Use Book of Lists or CEI Internships to find top companies based on geographic area.
• THEN, use LinkedIn to find alumni or other contacts at that company. Learn more.
What is an Informational Interview and how do I conduct one?
• At the end of the interview, ask the individual one of the following:
° Would you be willing to let me shadow you for… a week, a couple months, etc.?
° Do you know of any internship opportunities available in this field?
° What would you recommend as a next step for me in seeking an internship in this field?
• Within 24-48 hours, send a thank you note or email to the professional you interviewed and restate your interest in future opportunities.
• Connect with the professional on LinkedIn using a customized invitation.
• If they give you a professional piece of advice, apply it and update them on your progress.
People tend to want to help others they know and may be reluctant to assist complete strangers. By arranging a meeting to learn more about the individual as both a person and a professional, you are developing a relationship and they may be more willing to assist you in the future.