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Concerning internships in college

When will be a good time in my college career to look for internship?

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Subject: Career question for you

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Angela’s Answer

Hello! This is a great question. If you're going to go through your college/university, I recommend working with an Advisor to work on your timing and deciding what internship is best. They have access to a lot of info that you may not have as a student. I started an internship in my junior year (3rd year in) and it was great timing. I liked that I had completed it at that time because it left time for me to complete another internship in my senior year and have both on my resume. I hope this helps!
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Sirlei’s Answer

Hello Alantis C.!

When it comes to internships, it all depends on the field you're going into. Some fields require you be a Junior in college, while other are open to Freshmen.

You have to define a few things, starting with:
- What field you want to go into?
- What companies would you like to intern for?

Once you define these two things, you can then focus your energy on checking in with these companies to see how often they have internship opportunities and how early you should apply for them.

I hope this helps.

Best of luck!

Sirlei recommends the following next steps:

This site is a great resource: https://www.collegiateparent.com/career-prep/when-to-apply-for-internships/
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Molly’s Answer

Hi Alantis,

You've gotten some great answers already. I think the more internships you do, the better off you'll be. Not many people do them the summer of Freshman year but if you can, it's great for your resume. But, it's also great for you to have a chance to do 2-3 internships before you graduate. Because you'll have a better idea of the kind of work you like to do and the type of company you want to do it in. Internships are usually 3 months or less so it's really an awesome chance to try new things and find your passion.

I wish you all the best!

Molly
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Lauren’s Answer

A good time to start is whenever you feel ready!
If you want to start after freshman year, there are some freshman-specific programs you could apply to (at least in tech). These are usually at the bigger companies like Google or Facebook. You could also look at more local companies or apply to internships open to all years (just be advised that they tend to prefer juniors/seniors, so don't feel discouraged). This year you probably have to cast your net a lot wider because of fewer opportunities, but it's definitely possible to get an internship!
After sophomore/junior years it's definitely a good time to start applying to internships, with the post-junior year internship being the most critical as you could hypothetically turn it into a full time offer if it goes well! These years you have the most opportunities open to you, so take advantage of them.
If you wanted to start before college, there are also opportunities for high school students, so definitely do some research and apply if you're up for it.
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Marcelius Levites’s Answer

HELLO, HERE ARE SOME WEBSITES AND OTHER INDIVDUAL THOUGHT ABOUT YOUR QUESTION.


Tom Stagliano
Senior Aerospace Engineer (studied at MIT)Author has 49.2K answers and 130.4M answer views4y
Originally Answered: What year in college should I apply for an internship?
I had a Summer Job each and every summer before a year in college. I recommend that to you and to Every future college student.

Summer prior to freshman year of college, is most likely the same job you have been working in high school. For me it was working at McDonald’s.

After freshman year of college, most students have no real useful knowledge beyond what a high school senior has. Therefore, an “internship” is nice but relatively useless. Get a job that gives you Work experience. As a future aerospace engineer I was working for the NY State DOT doing land surveying. Because I knew someone at the NYSDOT (my father) and I passed a federal civil service exam to qualify for government jobs. However, I could have done that job fresh out of high school, but it did give me some work experience with different types of Team Members.

Summer after sophomore year in college. What I had learned so far would be useless to most aerospace companies, so I used connections in my home town to work as a repairer/installer of aluminum windows, screens, doors and awnings. Great experience in a technical shop environment and more experience dealing with Real people, both co-workers and customers.

Finally, as a Junior at MIT, I put together a seven month Co-Op (paying) job at an aerospace company in Los Angeles from February through August. Therefore, I had to have taken extra courses to be on track for graduation even with missing a complete semester by working. Wonderful experience, and I highly recommend it. Talk to the head of your department, and get a professor to help you set one up. Anyone can do it if you are a good student and determined.

Therefore, an internship in the Summer between junior and senior years is the Minimum that you should be seeking, and I highly recommend the 7 to 8 month Co-Op job in your future industry.

But in the earlier summers, any good Job to work on your Work Ethic and learn to work with different types of people.

Marcelius Levites recommends the following next steps:

https://www.thebalancecareers.com/when-to-apply-for-an-internship-2059852
https://www.earnest.com/blog/getting-an-internship-in-college/
https://www.quora.com/In-what-college-year-do-you-ideally-go-for-internships?share=1
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Amy’s Answer

I'd say look for internships early on if you can -- keep in mind that most companies prefer rising seniors or juniors, though, so don't be discouraged if you can't find any early on. There are a lot of directions you can take your summers -- studying abroad, getting a job, etc., which can all be good for your personal and professional development.
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MICHAEL’s Answer

right away, immediately. At our software company we bring in a group of interns in both our US and European offices each summer. They get invaluable experience and have the chance to make an impression on us - some of them have been hired.
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Sal’s Answer

It's never too early to start if the opportunity exists. Sophomore or junior year be the ideal time to start.
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Elsy’s Answer

Hi Alantis! I personally think you can start looking for and applying to internships as soon as you'd like. With four years of college you have plenty of time to explore options and try different industries. Internships are a perfect opportunity for that. Interning at different companies and Industries can give you a good read on what you like and don't like. At the end of your four years when you go to apply for your first entry level job you know what to look for. Hope this helps!
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Jordan’s Answer

My advice is to start looking for an internship during your 3rd year in college. Before searching for an interview, make sure that you have the required hard-skill at least at working knowledge level. Otherwise, you will be wasting time trying to get an internship you cannot get.
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Dawn’s Answer

As soon and as frequently as possible! I think it's a mistake to think of internships as just something to add to your resume. They are great opportunities to learn about yourself; what do you enjoy/not enjoy in the workplace, what types of tasks you're good at, what you're interested in. It will help direct your choices now and later!
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Atul’s Answer

The short answer is any time.
My son who had taken computer languages in the high school had good grades and had taken many AP courses.
After finishing the 1st year he landed a job in a local high tech company to write software for them in summer.
One of the reasons he got the interview was high GPA during his 1st year in the college and he was majoring Computer Eng.
He performed well in the interview and also passed their basic skill test - Employers nowadays always do this which is norm today.
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Patricia’s Answer

This is a great question and there have been some really good answers. I would recommend not waiting until your last year of college to do your internship. There may be a possibility the internship changes your mind on your career focus, so you would want to have some time to make any shifts in coursework to accommodate a possible new direction.
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Gloria’s Answer

Start looking as early as you can accommodate it. It is never too early to get hands on experience. Also, seeing the job/ industry first hand will allow you to determine whether you are actually interested or not. If yes, that's great! If not, reach out to others in your industry of choice for advice and if you learn that it isn't for you, you can always change majors.
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Samay’s Answer

Most likely Junior Year Summer and Senior Year Summer. It never hurts to start early but it is more difficult because many internships are looking for rising sophomores, rising juniors, and rising seniors. Most likely your resume won't be refined and your LinkedIn profile still in the works so prioritize those in your early years at college. Take advantage of your summers to enhance your resume, take classes you need credits for, networking, refining your LinkedIn, part time summer jobs, and having fun. Every one has different timelines and stages to starting-- take things at your own pace and at a speed that you're comfortable with. This stuff isn't a race and every person has a different idea on what they want in terms of a career.
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Taris’s Answer

In the final year of university studies.
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