This is a great question! Thanks for asking!
Different companies and institutions have different schedules with respect to when they begin recruiting their interns. In the IT sector, larger companies like Microsoft, Google and GitHub start pretty early at the larger universities. They do a good job of describing their recruiting schedules on their websites. For example:
These big companies might recruit as early as November for a summer internship that starts most often in May or June. Sometimes internships can take place during the school year, during the Spring or Fall semester. This means you miss a semester of courses, perhaps delay your graduation date, but make pretty good money while developing skills.
Smaller companies often recruit their interns much later in the academic schedule. Often this involves learning about the local companies in your city and finding out what their internship openings are on their respective websites.
Tanya recommends the following next steps:
- Don't hesitate to attend an internship fair at a larger university that's near you! I grew up in a little city in Oregon; during college, my friends and I got together in a friend's old car and drove up to the University of Washington in Seattle to attend their career and internship fair. Visit the websites of nearby universities to find out when their internship and career fairs are.