Creating Your Dream Internship

Career Blog

Published: June 19, 2018 by Evelyn Hudson

Have you always planned on doing an internship before you graduate? Do you know exactly what kind of internship you want?

But, what happens when you can’t find that dream internship?

The answer is simple: create it yourself!

Yes, you really can! With a little prep work, you can create the internship of your dreams at any organization you choose, even if they don’t offer it now.

Prep Work

If you have an idea of what you want to do, check out Handshake and other job search sites for open internships. If you can find exactly or close to what you want, be sure to copy the job description.

If you can’t find what you are looking for, start writing. Use another internship description as a model and craft your perfect internship description. Make sure it is thorough, formal and understandable.

Try to be as specific as possible in your duties and expectations. A company without an internship program might feel hesitant if they don’t know exactly how it will go ahead of time.

Pitching

Now that you have the internship description, find a few companies where this internship would fit and contact their HR department. If you know of someone at the company you want to learn from, try contacting him or her directly. You will need to write carefully-worded cover letters that are tailored to each company. Make sure you emphasize how your internship would benefit the company and why you are an excellent choice as an intern.

Email is a great way to start. Put your detailed cover letter in the body of the email and attach both your resume and the job description. Add that you will call in a few days to follow up. When you do call, ask if there are any questions you did not answer in your initial email. This will help to strengthen your next pitch.

Interviewing

Getting an interview is great! It means the organization is very interested in your idea. Be sure to bring the internship description, a portfolio of your best work, and your resume to the interview. Show your work samples and explain how each demonstrates a skill that could help the organization. Remember, you are asking the organization to do you a favor at this point, so be sure to emphasize how they will get as much out of you as an intern as you will out of them as professional experience.

Be prepared to really go in depth about the internship description you created and share your vision for your time there. This is the time to really sell yourself—so don’t be shy!

Follow-Up

Within the next 24 hours, be sure to write a thank you note to the interviewer for their time and consideration. Include the highlights of your conversation and let them know you are happy to answer any additional questions. Use this as an opportunity to add in any selling points you may have missed during the interview.

Have you ever created your dream internship? Share your experience in the comments!


New LIS Jobs in Handshake

Library Associate     Tulane University, Howard-Tilton Memorial Library

ILS Specialist Position (Integrated Library System)    Southern Tier Library System

Don’t forget to explore job openings outside of the public and/or academic libraries in Handshake. Consider searching on topics such as taxonomy, research, data management, digital asset management, and similar terms that may reflect your particular LIS skills or area of emphasis.