By: Tina Lin  | 

Career Center Corner: Summer Internship Timeline

Am I late or is it still early to apply for summer internships?

It’s definitely not early, but the detailed answer to this question depends on the industry and types of companies. Certain industries have rigorous processes for summer internship opportunities with advanced timelines that begin as early as the summer before. Large, multinational brand name companies typically have an established annual internship program with a competitive application process of many steps. Internship application openings and deadlines vary significantly between industries and companies. (For example, Goldman Sachs 2018 Summer Internship applications opened in July 2017 with a deadline in November. However, CBS News opens its 2018 summer intern applications on Jan 1 with a deadline of Feb 28.)

However, small-medium sized companies or start-ups may be more flexible in creating special, project-based, or ad-hoc internships depending on the company’s business needs. These rolling opportunities are dependent on various economic factors, and the key here is to keep a lookout for these openings. This is where networking plays a critical role for staying in the loop and staying front-of-mind. Getting these company names and networking contacts on your target list is a critical part of a diversified job search.

Awareness of industry and company hiring cycle time frames prepares you for seizing the opportunity. Speak to a Career Center counselor to learn more about differences in hiring cycles between various industries, such as technology, real estate, marketing, accounting, finance, consulting, healthcare or others. Be informed about postings on YU Career Link and how to access the latest job board resources so you can do your research.

Important questions to address in preparing your internship application:  

  • Which industry are you looking to get a summer internship in?
  • Which different companies within this industry are on your target list?
  • Is your resume competitive enough to pass the 10-second test?

The time to prepare is NOW. If you are a sophomore or junior, be sure your resume is ready before Thanksgiving, and that you’ve done a cover letter before year-end. Preparing now will prime you to seize the moment when new internship opportunities are posted at the start of the New Year.  

Awareness of the process and effort involved in preparing a competitive resume and cover letter enables you to manage your time well in submitting a strong application that lands the interview. Just as athletes practice for a game and musicians practice for a concert, a student needs to practice resume and cover letter writing skills to get that interview invitation. Most students underestimate the number of drafts it takes to create a resume that looks good and sounds good. You have 10-seconds to make a good first impression.

Will your resume avoid rejection and be selected for an interview?