You think you want to go into tech - you’ve seen friends secure internships at cool companies, but how are they finding all of these positions? Finding a summer internship (or full-time position) is always an endeavor unto itself. This post aims to provide some insider tips for finding that amazing internship.
1. Start by asking around
Asking friends in the major where they’ve worked or are applying to is always a great place to start! They can give you the inside scoop on smaller companies that you didn’t know had internships. If they interned somewhere previously, it never hurts to ask them how they found the internship (which can give you ideas about how to find your own job), what the interview process was like, and whether or not they liked the company. Yalies go off to such a diverse array of internships each summer - get a sense of what kind of company you could see yourself at!
2. Think about what kind of internship you are interested in
Within the tech industry there are so many different kind of internships! Think about what you want to get out of your summer, and use that to target your job search. Here are some questions that might help you decide.
Are you interested in software engineering or the hardware side of things? What about data science?
Do you see yourself at a large company with an organized internship program or do you want to experience a small startup?
Are you interested in web dev?
3. Do some research online
Think about companies whose mission or product you admire - see if they have an opportunity available! They might have an online portal, or sometimes even cold-emailing them can work. You never know what might turn up.
4. Join professional networks
Make a good LinkedIn profile (see for more help. It should expand on and personalize the information on your resume). A lot of recruiters will look you up on LinkedIn after recruiting events if they were impressed. Having a good LinkedIn profile can help you get in touch with a recruiter who can tell you more. Join Angelist! This is a technical networking site specifically for start-ups. You create a profile similar to your Linkedin, indicate which companies you are interested in, and if the interest is mutual, you can get an interview!
Keep an eye on the yale-cs-majors-job-request mailing list - sometimes start-ups will post internship opportunities there.
Look on Simplicity!! There are tons of opportunities specifically for Yalies. Also, sometimes big companies will conduct in-person interviews at Yale if you apply via Simplicity, which can fast-track you towards a SuperDay.
5. Network and make connections
If a company is sponsoring a tech talk, a lunch, or any kind of networking event - go! There are a variety of reasons why these events are helpful:
First, it gives you face-time with recruiters. They are your touchstone throughout the recruiting process, and making a good impression can give you a leg-up. Often, they decide who gets the first-round interviews, so smile and ask questions!! Additionally, if you have any questions at all about the specifics of a company’s interview process - they are the ones to ask.
Second, tech talks in particular are a great place to learn something new. They often center on topics that are related to the work that the company does, so see if you find the material interesting!
Third, you can talk to engineers about their experience. There is only so much you can learn from a company’s careers website. Learn about their culture, what they love about the job, what they would change. Get to know the people! Sometimes, unforeseen opportunities can come from these events.
6. Go to the CEID networking fair and any similar events
Every year at the end of September, the CEID hosts a job fair. This is a great place to apply for jobs. By giving your resume directly to a recruiter and meeting them face to face, you prevent your application from getting lost in the black void of an online resume drop. Come prepared to talk about any interesting projects that you have done and what you are looking for this summer.
If you are part of an under-represented demographic in tech, consider applying for various conferences related to that demographic (e.g. Tapioca? Hispanic? Grace Hopper Conference). These conferences often have an entire floor with recruiters where you can drop your resume and even get interviewed during the conference. Additionally, Yale sponsors women for the Grace Hopper Conference.
7. Don’t give up!
There are so many different opportunities, and something always turns up :)