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What should I consider when looking for internships?

Before you start your search, create a list of your most important criteria for an internship.  Talk with a career counselor who can help you determine a strategy for your internship search.  Consider:

Pay: Do you need to be paid for your internship or can you take an unpaid position?  If taking an unpaid internship is possible, you will find more potential opportunities.  If the internship is not paid, can you receive academic credit for your internship?

Location: Where do you want to work? Should you go back to your hometown and live with your family?  Can you live in a different city if you find inexpensive housing?

Career Industry or Function: What industry and/or job function do you want to target?  Are you aware of all of the possible options?  What is the best way to learn more about your industries or functions of choice?

Timing/Deadlines: While it's never too early to start looking for an internship, there are a few important issues to be aware of:

  • For some extraordinarily competitive you must plan ahead and compete to get relevant summer internships as early as the summer after sophomore year.  In many cases, firms in these industries look for a 3.5 GPA or higher.
  • Government agencies like the CIA, NSA, and the State Department require background checks that can take months.  As a result, the deadline for summer internships is in the fall of the year before the internship.  (e.g The application deadline for a summer 2021 internship could be as early as October 1, 2020.)

Where to look for an Internship

The TSU Career Development Center highly recommends the resources listed below.  Use these resources as a starting point in your internship search.  Remember finding an internship is a competitive process, in addition to submitting a targeted resume and cover letter   networking plays an integral role in finding and landing an internship.

Handshake by TigerTrack is online system designed to connect you with the Career Development Center.  It provides access to numerous job opportunities ranging from internships to full and part-time employment.  Upload your critiqued resume to the resume book so employers can contact you for on-campus interviews and recruiting events!


Are you looking to start your internship search, but not quite sure of what you want to do?  View this list of popular industries/cities to learn about internship opportunities available right now.  Check out the different tabs to find internships in places like Washington, DC, Atlanta, Chicago, and St.Louis

Internship Listing Guide

This guide provides a listing of companies with established internship programs.  This listing is organized by industry.

Study Abroad

Thinking about interning abroad? Contact Mark Brinkley in the CAEIS Main Office

Tel: (615) 963-7660

Job Fairs

  • View the Career Development Center homepage for information on Career Fairs



How Do I Create a Good LinkedIn Profile?


Website of Professional Organizations in Your Field

  • Find local chapters of national organizations (such as American Psychological Association, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Public Relations Society of America, etc).
  • Contact the leader of the local chapter to network and attend events.

Contact Companies/Organizations that Interest You

  • Don't sit back and wait for an opportunity
  • Go make your own opportunities happen by proposing internships to companies/organizations that interest you
  • Be sure to look at the career sections of their websites to see what opportunities are posted

Use local Chambers of Commerce of Business Journals to identify companies to pursue