How to Land a Freshman/Sophomore Internship

Experience can be achieved in many different ways if you haven’t had prior internship experience. In order to position yourself to get noticed by a recruiter:

  1. Spend some time thinking about the extracurricular activities you can involve yourself in. Joining clubs and organizations can help you attain valuable experience and showcase your passion. Rising to leadership roles within those clubs and organizations - even better!
  2. Get a good foundation in your technical education. You want to make sure you have sound fundamentals - these will come across in interviews. Even if you make a mistake in an interview or get part of a question wrong, your fundamentals will shine through and more often than not, that will move you on to the next round. Focus your class selection and studies on building that strong technical foundation  - the flashy stuff will come with experience over time.
  3. Show initiative - gaining experience through volunteering or part-time opportunities shows a willingness to put in the work. Every experience you can get is a good experience - no matter the outcome -  because you’re always going to learn something and be able to talk about that in an interview.
  4. Don’t forget to highlight your school projects in your interview. Working on challenging projects can showcase your problem-solving skills, and participating in group projects can show how you handle challenges and working with others. Was there any conflict working with others? That’s ok - because that might be an interview question. And that would be an opportunity to showcase how you managed that conflict, and what you learned from it. 

Pro Tip: attend hackathons! Recruiters love them (and they’re usually in attendance too!)

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