Finding Internship Opportunities
Finding Internship Opportunities
Eric J. Kuhn (Intern) gives expert video advice on: How can I find a good internship?; How can I stand out when applying for an internship?; What is a 'rabbi' and how can I get one? and more...
What should I say when I get an HR person on the phone?
When you're on that phone, rehearse this. Rehearse it with your parents. Rehearse it with your friends. Rehearse it in front of a mirror. Don't be like, "Ummm, yeah. My name is Eric. I go to like some school and I really want a summer internship, yo." That's not the best way. Be like, "Hey, my name is Eric. I'm really interested in a summer internship. I was wondering who I can send my resume and cover letter to."
Are there any tricks or tips that can help me with my internship search?
Say you want to be a doctor, right? There are a lot, a lot of hospitals. There are local hospitals. There are clinics. There are big hospitals. There are specialty hospitals. There are doctor's offices. Cast your net wide. Call up these people. Make a list. Have a chart. Have an Excel spreadsheet: company, who you spoke to, their phone number, their e-mail. So when you get on the phone with that intern coordinator, ask her for her direct line, her direct e-mail. That's the money - when you have their direct info. And so, keep this all in a chart. Keep it at your fingertips. And then, at that other column, just have notes. Spoke to her about this. She mentioned that her daughter was about to enter kindergarten. So, next time when you call up, "Hey! How was your daughter's first day at kindergarten?" And it's like, "Whoa! You remembered that?" I mean, that's huge! There was this guy who I once met who, in his Palm Pilot, after he'd met someone, would write down every single detail about them. So two years down the road when they'd bump into each other in Istanbul, he's like, "Oh, how's your son Jack? What is he, twelve now?" And they're like, "How'd you remember that? We met for three seconds." But he kept all these notes. That is such a good tip.
What if a company doesn't have a formal intern program?
An internship is a pretty loose idea in many respects. It can be very, very structured and it can have workshops, and it can have this and it can have that and it can have a point person who is in charge of you. And then on the other side of the spectrum, you call company A, and usually this is a little more local, this is like a small little office or something along those lines. So you call the company and say,"Hey, I'd love to intern for you". "Well, we don't really have an intern program". "Ok, well I'm working for free. Do you think you could put me in touch with someone who might be interested?" Hey, you never know where it is going to go, and that's the point, you can't, you just have to call - you have to make that phone call, you have to make that leap of faith, and you know what, sometimes get on the phone with someone, you're like, "ok, that went nowhere" but don't let that discourage you. Because yeah, you know what, there are going to be times when things will go nowhere. And actually, there might be a hundred phone calls that you made that just are all dead ends. But then, there's that one phone call that is so money, and you're like perfect, and so companies might not have an internship program. Companies might have never had an intern before and you're going to pave the way. And get on that phone, and say, "I'm really good. I'm really responsible. I really, really want to work for your company because X, Y and Z." So before you get on that phone, before you start looking into companies, before you start applying to companies, look into them, know what they're about. So when you get on the phone with someone and say "I really want to work with you because..." Right, and that's, and then they're like, "Oh, you know, he's really smart. He really learned a lot about what we do. I now know why" and someone might help you. Someone might not, and if a company doesn't take interns, then you're out of luck. Before I was in college, I really wanted to intern at a place, they didn't accept people who were in college. Had to find something else, had to be creative, had to look in a different light then, a different angle to see what else I could do in that industry, but not necessarily at that company or at that level.