Our goal is to prepare each student both professionally and personally for their internship experience in Washington D.C. Students admitted to the program work closely with advisors to develop a competitive portfolio. Once accepted into the program, students attend professional development workshops that provide valuable information on how to successfully secure an internship, create professional resumes and cover letters, perfect interviewing skills, and understand the professional environment in DC.
Now that you are admitted to the program, you can expect to adhere to the following timeline. These steps will thoroughly prepare you for your experience in Washington, D.C.
- 1. Meet with our advisors
- After you're admitted, Washington Program advisors will contact you to schedule a one-on-one advising meeting. Come to this meeting with questions you have about the program, a list of internships you are considering, and ideas of careers you would like to pursue after graduation. The more organized you are, the more we can help you!
- 2. Complete the internship search form
- To choose your best-fit internship, you'll need to narrow your search to internships that fall under one of two career fields (e.g. government and/or law). Focus on career fields that align with your values, interest, and skills. This form will help us understand your internship preferences.
- 3. Attend professional development workshops
- These workshops will prepare you for DC by providing information about securing internships in DC. We are also able to help you during our office hours. If you are struggling to secure an internship and need further assistance, you can contact the Program Administrator in Washington, D.C.
- 4. Send us your resume to review
- D.C. internships are competitive, so your documents need to be in top shape. We require that you send us your resume for review before you apply for internships. Be sure to:
• Send your resume as a Word document
• In the same email, include a description of your preferred internship description
• Allow 3 to 4 days for review
- 5. Apply to 10-15 internships, then follow up
- Apply to ten internships, and follow up within two weeks. Once your resume and supporting documents are complete, apply to internships. We urge you to apply to ten internships and recommend following up with each organization two weeks after you apply to ensure your materials were received. If the organization is unresponsive, contact the Washington Program staff for assistance.
- 6. Prepare for your interviews
- If an organization wants to interview you, they will usually contact you by phone or email to set up a phone interview. Research the organization and have questions for your interviewers. Go through the tough questions in the interview section of the resource manual and prepare bullet point notes to refer to in your interview. Hold mock interviews with your friend/yourself so you become comfortable answering these questions. Test yourself by recording your answers and thinking of ways to improve upon your answers.
- 7. Evaluate your opportunities
Consider your career goals after graduating and how this internship can prepare you for them.
If you receive multiple offers, ask yourself:
• How do these internships help me achieve my goals?
• What tasks will I be working on at these internships?
• Do these internships provide perks, such as free transportation, preferred location, or pay?
If you have only received one offer, consider:
• How close am I to when I leave for DC? Is it worth waiting to hear from another internship?
• Have I heard from or when will I hear from other internships? (If no, follow up)
• How risky would it be to not take this internship?
- 8. Secure an internship
- You are responsible for securing an internship before traveling to Washington, DC. Once you have accepted an internship, complete the I Secured an Internship form.