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How to Get an Internship

If you want to break into an industry, any industry, the best strategy is to be born into a family that owns a business in that field. The next best thing is to get an internship.


  • Step 1: Choose field Pick a field to intern in. Choose something that’s exciting to you. You don’t have to know a lot about the field—that’s what the internship is for—you just need a genuine enthusiasm for learning more about it.
  • Step 2: Update resume Update your resume. Include any work experience or academic study related to the field you want to intern in.
  • TIP: Many internships are unpaid—be prepared to live cheaply.
  • Step 3: Talk to internship coordinator If you go to a school with an internship coordinator, see if he or she can advise you on your area of interest.
  • Step 4: Tell everyone you're looking Tell everyone—friends, family, neighbors, dentists, flight attendants—that you’re looking for an internship. You never know who knows whom.
  • Step 5: Send emails Send an email to all the reputable companies in your field, even if they don’t officially offer internships. People will respond to enthusiastic inquiries.
  • TIP: If there’s a company you really want to work for, consider contacting high-level people there directly. If they like you, they could make something happen for you right away.
  • Step 6: Book interviews Book as many interviews as you can.
  • Step 7: Send note or email Send a thank-you note or email after all your interviews.
  • Step 8: Be enthusiastic & work hard When you get the internship, be enthusiastic and work hard. Remember, the people you’re working for could give you a real job next year. And besides, everyone hates a lazy intern.
  • FACT: Microsoft founder Bill Gates once interned as a congressional page—and supported himself by selling old campaign buttons as collectors’ items.

You Will Need

  • Computer
  • Phone
  • Unflagging tenacity

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