Internships

Jumpstart your Career with an Unpaid Internship

college-internship

Finding an internship is a full time job. Finding one that pays can be like working overtime. Try these tips to get you there, and accelerate your career.  While it might not seem glamorous, an unpaid internship can lead to greater experience and eventually, a paid position.  Check out these tips and resources to get you on the right track.

college internship

Find an Internship by Doing Your Research

Not all unpaid internships are created equal. Some offer great recommendations, mentorship, and career experience for young professionals. Others prey on those looking for experience and use your labor against you. Make sure you ask questions specifically about what you will be getting in return for your services. You are an asset, so never undersell yourself. Know your worth.

No Money, No Problem!

If you really need funding, check with your college career center  about stipends for semesters or during the summer months. Many schools have funds set up specifically for students who are doing work that is unpaid, and are willing to help. The earlier you get the information the better, because you are not the only one on this search.

Where do I find Internships?

Finding a great internship is a combination of skill, persistence and dedication. There is no magic pill to make every internship great, but if you start to hone in on what exactly you want to do, you can identify target industries and companies. Below are a list of great sites to get you started.

  • Internships.com -   A huge database of internships from all over the world. Search by industry, virtual, and city.
  • Internqueen – A great site run by @LaurenBerger, a career expert for Gen-Y and Millenial Career Expert. Chock full of information and internships organized by semester.
  • OneDayOneInternship – Daily internships listings run by @WillyF who also runs the popular site, OneDayOne Job. A great tool if you are unsure where exactly you want to work, or what you want to do.
  • Youtern.com – A job portal that provides high impact internships with startups and other comapnies. They also have an awesome blog with tips and tricks to maximize your experience as an intern and create value.
  • Indeed.com – The largest job database on the internet, Indeed pulls together listings from anywhere on anything. The more specific you are with your search, the better your results will be.

You can also find internships right here at Young Finances. Click here for details.
Where have you had success finding internships? What methods did you use to find them? Were they paid or unpaid? Let me know!

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  • http://www.realsimplefinances.com/ Alexandra @RealSimpleFinances

    Jonathan, thanks for these tips! I just took an an internship myself, and I think it’s going to work out fabulously. Even though it’s unpaid, typically you can’t beat the experience.

  • Jonathan Jackson

    @alexandrarealsimplefinances:disqus so true! Its all about leveraging your opportunities and making them count!

  • Frugal_Confessions

    This is definitely a great way to snag that first job. I would know…as it’s how I got mine! I interned at a company even though I was overloaded with college and working, and boy am I glad I had the foresight to do so. It started at just 6-12 hours per week. After a few months, we agreed to start paying me $12 an hour. Then, they hired me right out of college starting at $40,000/year (8 years ago). It only ended up lasting a year because they were a start-up company, but getting that first job was crucial.

    • http://YoungFinances.com/ LaTisha Styles

      I had an unpaid internship with a company that couldn’t afford to hire me right after graduation because we were still deep in the recession. But my boss wrote an excellent recommendation for me in order to get the job I have now. I agree Amanda, the internship can help in more ways than one!