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Preparing and Applying for Internships During COVID-19
Networking During COVID-19
Bolstering Your Experience During COVID-19 In Preparation For Your Fall Internship
Effective Strategies for Remote Internships
Resources For Remote Internships and Virtual Volunteers
Internship 101
Available Internships
Internship Meetings
Internship Guide
Individual Appointments
The Test for Unpaid Interns
Factors to Consider In Evaluating Internship Offers
International Students


Preparing and Applying for Internships During COVID -19

The present time has presented new challenges for students applying for internship opportunities however there is much in your control by being proactive:

  • Reach out to employers you have applied to. Indicate your continued interest realizing there may be necessary changes and that you are open to working remotely if they are redesigning projects or assignments (if you are)
  • Set up Google alerts for organizations to keep informed on the status of their business and services in preparation for future interviews
  • Participate in online webinars that some organizations may be offering - ask a question or comment - make yourself known
  • Check CareerHunter, LinkedIn and job boards such as Indeed and Idealist often for new opportunities. Always check out the specific organizations' website before applying
  • Be flexible - consider potential related occupations and internships in those areas as well
  • Keep your network strong - stay in touch with past employers, colleagues and join groups on LinkedIn
  • Check your Hunter emails for updates on employers, fairs, orientations and virtual information sessions
  • Start making your wish list for Fall, Spring and Summer internships you can apply to
  • Use this time for professional development to make yourself a stronger candidate
  • Update your tech skills to increase your marketability in any field and be better prepared for possible remote projects
  • Investigate and learn how to use remote platforms including ZOOM, Skype, Go to Meeting, Google Hangouts etc.
  • Start or update your LinkedIn account
  • Work on an independent project such as a blog, video, article, tech project - something that you can link to a resume and cover letter to distinguish yourself and your skills
  • Collaborate with other students on a group project to demonstrate leadership or team work skills
  • Seek out resources to learn more about your intended field such as Career Links on the CDS website, the Occupational Outlook Handbook, professional organizations
  • Update your resume and cover letter and have it reviewed by CDS remotely
  • Practice interviewing skills
  • Contact CDS for assistance at


Networking During COVID-19

Social distancing doesn't have to negatively affect your networking efforts. These days, many of us are spending more time online than ever before. Utilize this time to reconnect, reinforce and build your networks in preparation for applying to internship and job opportunities.

1) Contact past employers and colleagues. Learn how their organizations have been affected during this period, what trends they are seeing and share what you are learning and doing

2) Check out professional organizations in your intended field. Check out free webinars you can join

3) Join LinkedIn groups

4) Send thank you messages for any advice or information that you recieve

5) Keep in periodic contact with your network - send links to articles or information that you see that could be useful to them

6) Building and strengthening your network now will contribute positively to your present and future internship and job searches


Bolstering Your Experience During COVID-19

In any hiring market, it is important to have skills and experience that will distingush you from other candidates. During COVID-19 some of the usual ways to build on your experience such as internships, volunteer work and part time jobs are temporarily more limited. However, there are still many ways· you can get experience and build your resume in preparation for future internships and also demonstrate how you can be proactive:

1) Check out faculty research projects on department websites. Email professors to ascertain if you can be of assistance remotely

2) Share your skill set - If you are proficient in a particular skill, teach others via a video on YouTube

3) Some K-12 students need assistance with certain subject matter. Be entrepreneurial and consider private tutoring

4) If you utilize social media platforms, check with organizations you have worked or volunteered with in the past. See if you can be of assistance with updates on their websites or social media posts

5) Create your own website - post articles, blogs, projects, videos or interviews·and increase your online presence. Students who can show creative ways of gaining experience and who can discuss this on future interviews will be able to impress employers with their work ethic and initiative


Effective Strategies for Remote Internships

1) Do not respond to unsollicted emails offering internship opportunities. Seek out established organizations you wish to apply to and contact them directly

2) For those who previously applied for internships and have not heard back, consider contacting them as to the status of your application and possibility of remote projects

3) Check with your faculty advisor as to whether your remote internship will meet academic credit requirements through a written description of your project responsibilities and organization supervisor contact information

4) Once accepted, be sure to be clear on project responsibilities and time lines for project completion

5) Set up a schedule and routine to structure your work

6) When possible, set up to work in an area of your home with the fewest distractions

7) Discuss a supervision schedule with your organization supervisor - when, how often and how best to contact. Is your supervisor available as questions come up or should they be saved for supervision meetings? How will your project supervisor monitor progress and provide feedback?

8) If working on a team project, determine when all members are free for meetings or communications

9) Set up a time with your academic supervisor to review project progress and any academic assignments

10) Keep a log of your internship time and activities for both your organization and academic supervisors

11) Ask for letters of recommendation from both academic and project supervisors at the end of the internship



Resources For Remote Internships and Virtual Volunteers


Experience comes in many different forms. As you look toward the future, employers will be asking how you handled the changes in your plans and how you advanced your skills during COVID 19. Remote/virtual opportunities are one way to deal with this challenge and can be found on the following sites. As always, be sure you check out an organization thoroughly before applying.


UN volunteers:

Federal government- Virtual Student Federal Service:




New York

New York Volunteer

Organization websites: Check out organizations of interest directly



Internship 101

An internship is a field work experience which provides you with the opportunity to participate in pre-professional work related to your career interests. Interns work in corporations, government agencies, and non-profit organizations depending on your career interests. Internships are available during the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters on a part-time(8-20 hours per week) or full-time(30-35 hours per week during summer). Matriculated undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to apply. Some projects may require related coursework and a specific class standing(i.e. sophomore, junior or senior.)

For internships, schedule a virtual appointment with the Internship Coordinator by email at to discuss internship procedures and resources, academic credit options and the application process. We recommend that you apply as early as possible.



Internships - A Key To Your Career

What Not To Do When Applying For An Internship

Making The Most Of Your Internship

Building Your Skill Set

Building Your Experience Through Volunteer Work




Having an internship gives you the opportunity to:

  • Explore a career field of interest
  • Learn new job skills and gain experience
  • Demonstrate related experience on a résumé
  • Discuss experience at a job interview
  • Obtain references from professionals in the field
  • Develop contacts for future employment
  • Become better prepared for a competitive job market
  • Earn possible academic credit or stipends


Available Internships

CDS has extensive internship opportunities in all majors and career fields for students to gain pre-professional work experience related to career interests:

Arts Administration
Computer Graphics
Computer Programming
Cultural Affairs
Economic Development
Entertainment Casting
Environmental Protection
Health Administration
Health Education
Historical Preservation
Human Resources
International Affairs
Laboratory Research
Legal Affairs
Legislative Research
Museum Operations
Physical Education
Policy Analysis
Public Relations
Real Estate
Social Research
Social Services
Special Events Planning
Statistical Analysis
Systems Analysis
Urban Planning
Video Production
Women's Issues


Internship Meetings

Students are invited to attend information sessions regarding internship opportunities. Find out about the broad range of internships, how to apply, earn a stipend, and receive academic credit for your experience.

Check the Career Development Services main webpage under "Upcoming Events" for internship meetings and organization information sessions.


Internship Guide

The Internship Guide (PDF)  & Internship Program Pamphlet will help you prepare for the application process for internship placement.


Individual Appointments

For internships, schedule a virtual appointment with the Internship Coordinator by email at  to discuss internship procedures and resources, academic credit options and the application process. We recommend that you apply as early as possible.


The Test for Unpaid Interns (according to the Dept. of Labor website)

There are some circumstances under which individuals who participate in “for-profit” private sector internships or training programs may do so without compensation.The Supreme Court has held that the term "suffer or permit to work" cannot be interpreted so as to make a person whose work serves only his or her own interest an employee of another who provides aid or instruction.This may apply to interns who receive training for their own educational benefit if the training meets certain criteria.The determination of whether an internship or training program meets this exclusion depends upon all of the facts and circumstances of each such program.

The following six criteria must be applied when making this determination:


  1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment;
  2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
  3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
  4. The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern; and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
  5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
  6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.
Complete information can be found at the Department of Labor website


Factors to Consider In Evaluating Internship Offers (click for more information)

In applying for unpaid internships, in particular at for-profit businesses, it is important to do your best to make sure that the opportunity is one that will primarily benefit you the student, rather than the business or organization. This is because you are there to receive education and training. But you should also know that it is unlawful for for-profit businesses to use unpaid interns to displace regular, paid employees.

International Students

Students who are FI - (Student Visa) status must inform the International Student Office (Room 1109 Hunter East) of plans to engage in an internship in order that the appropriate paperwork can be processed. See for more detailed information.

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