When you are preparing to apply to internships it is a good idea to plan ahead! Some companies and organizations (i.e., the Federal Government, Finance/Consulting, etc.) have deadlines as early as November for summer internships. Typically most internship openings will be posted between December and March. It is best to begin researching possible paths in the fall semester and to begin reaching out to companies/organizations over winter break.
Looking for internships is similar to looking for jobs. There are several strategies you can use to find an internship. You can:
- Look for internship listings on websites and in newspapers and directories
- Identify prospective employers/organizations and contact them about internship opportunities
- Network to find out about hidden internship opportunities
It is best to use a combination of these strategies rather than relying on just one approach. More information on each strategy is included below, and we are here to help. A staff member in the Center for Career Education would be happy to help you with your individual internship search strategy.
Below are some examples of where you can begin searching for advertised internship opportunities. More industry-specific internship resources are provided in our Internship Resource Guide. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list of resources; to learn more about options in your area of interest, you may want to schedule an appointment with a counselor.
Handshake provides students with access to Vassar’s job and internship database. This is where we post opportunities when alums, parents, and friends of Vassar, or employers contact us. You can log into your account with your email address and password through Vassar Single Sign-On.
Vault's Business and Career Insights is a comprehensive online career resource that includes downloadable Career Guides and Industry Guides for a wide variety of career fields.
On-campus users: Enter your email address to create a personal account.
Off-campus users: Send an email to email@example.com with your name, graduation year, email address, country, and zip and we will create an account on your behalf.
Researching Prospective Companies & Organizations
Another way to look for internships is to identify prospective companies & organizations by field of interest and/or geographic area. After you’ve researched a particular company or organization, contact them to inquire about internship possibilities. You can use both LinkedIn and Glassdoor to search for specific companies or organizations that are engaged in work that is of interest to you. Another resource that students can use to target employers and specific locations (within the United States) is:
CareerOneStop’s Employer Locator tool allows you to identify companies/organizations by industry, occupation, location, or keyword.
One of the best ways to secure an internship opportunity is through networking. Seek out opportunities to conduct an informational interview with people who work in your fields of interest. Ask them questions about: the industry, where to look for internships in this industry, and whether there are people you should talk to, publications you should read, or email lists you should subscribe to that may aid you in your quest to become more familiar with that industry. More information about how to network and some of the networking opportunities, resources, and communities that are available to students and alums can be found in the Networking section of our website.
VassarNet is Vassar’s online community of alums, students, parents, faculty, and friends of Vassar, which can be used to build your professional network and find Vassar-connected opportunities. On this platform, you can:
- Search for people by industry, location, major, and more.
- Send messages to contacts of interest, and set up informational interviews.
- Join groups to affiliate over shared interests and identities.
- Search for (or post) job and internship opportunities for the Vassar community.
- Ask career-related questions and get answers from the community.
LinkedIn is a powerful resource for career networking. Here are some tips for connecting with alums on LinkedIn:
- Join the Vassar College Alums group and other related sub-groups to find alums in your field(s) of interest.
- Use the Advanced Search features to find people in specific organizations and industries.
- Check out Vassar’s “University Page” on LinkedIn to explore the careers of the nearly 30,000 Vassar alums.