Sumer Intern Photo

Each semester, political organizations, non-profits, corporations, and associations welcome interns to their institutions. These positions tend to be short-term – lasting three to four months – and extremely competitive. In a fast-paced environment like D.C., how can an intern stand out and make the most from the experience?

  1. Find your passion. After you decide that you want to find a meaningful internship, do not simply apply to the first posting you see. Instead, play to your passions. Make a list of your qualifications and interests. Then, search for opportunities that will both utilize your strengths and teach you new, sought-after skills.
  1. Do your research. Job fairs, university career websites, and student and special interest groups are invaluable resources. Attend an event or go online. Before you apply, learn about the organization, its mission, and its people to determine whether it would be a good fit for you. 
  1. Be a “Yes” person. Most organizations have moved past asking their interns to get coffee or lunch. However, don’t be surprised if you are asked to complete a mundane task every so often. the domain movie theater . Instead of approaching a less appealing task with a negative attitude, show that you are willing to be a team player and complete the project. If you demonstrate that you are smart, capable, and driven, when a more interesting project comes along, your supervisor will count on you to get the job done. 
  1. Make connections. Develop strong relationships with your supervisor, colleagues, and fellow interns. After your internship is over, continue to engage with your network through email, phone calls, and in-person meetings. Always keep your eyes open for potential networking opportunities – whether attending an event or reaching out to a professional you recently connected with. A “random” connection could lead you to discover something new about yourself or better yet, it could lead to a job. 
  1. Reflect on your experience. Once you complete your internship, it is important to reflect. Did your internship reinforce your interests or do you need to reassess your former notions? Analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of your experience will help to give you a better understanding of what environment you work best in, where your passion lies, and what type of people you work well with. These assessments will help to inform your future career goals.

Most of all, remember that your internship is a growing experience. It provides exposure to new opportunities, helps you to develop new skills and knowledge, and above all, teaches you about yourself.