Internships are a key way students learn outside the classroom. An internship can help shape your career trajectory, expand your professional network, build your resume, and bolster your chances of securing a good job after graduation. If you’re interested in internships but unsure how to get one, you’re not alone! This page can help you get started.

Advice & Strategy:

Reflect on what you want out of an internship:

  • Learn a new skill or practice a skill you recently learned
  • Apply your classroom learning in a real-world setting
  • Experience a new sector, industry, or work setting
  • Explore an interesting career path
  • Get your foot in the door at a specific organization

Think about logistics:

  • Many internships are paid but some are not. How important is pay to you?
  • Do you want to pay for and earn academic credit for the learning that takes place in your internship? It’s completely optional.
  • Internships can happen anytime of the year. When can you squeeze in a 10-15 hour a week internship?

Look for internships:

  • Contacts – get referrals from friends, family, professors, advisers, etc.
  • Events – employer information sessions and departmental, university, and regional fairs
  • Online – HuskyJobs, UW departmental websites, employer websites, internship clearinghouse sites, internet keyword searches, etc.
  • Create your own – approach an organization you feel passionate about with a proposal stating how you could benefit them and what you could learn from them

Get your materials together:

  • Draft and polish a resume, cover letter, intro email, and thank you email.
  • The importance of these documents cannot be overstated. Take them seriously.  Make sure they are error-free and tailored to specific internships.

Evaluate opportunities:

  • Does the internship involve meaningful work or just menial tasks?
  • Does the employer seem committed to providing ongoing supervision and feedback?
  • Is the employer willing to help you create learning goals?

Have a stellar internship experience:

  • Look for learning opportunities in every task and don’t be afraid to ask questions
  • Take initiative, look for ways to contribute, and follow-through
  • Put yourself out there and meet others
  • Communicate clearly and regularly with your supervisor
  • Be professional, punctual, and positive
  • Reflect on what you learned and how to articulate that to future employers

Just for International Students:

Next Steps:

  • Sign up for HuskyJobs
  • Attend the Internship Fair in winter quarter
  • Have your application materials reviewed at one of the career centers
  • Check with the Carlson Center or your academic department about earning credit for the learning that takes place in an internship.