Internships: A Step in Your Career Path

By Anita DeCianni-Brown, collegewide career development coordinator

March 10, 2016

InternshipsLong before Robert DeNiro became Anne Hathaway’s intern in the 2015 movie “The Intern,” SUNY Empire students were participating in internships.

Internships provide many opportunities to gain valuable experience in your field while working on your degree, and to develop valuable skills that employers are seeking. Internships also give insight into career paths and the industry in which you are seeking to work. In some cases, interning can lead to employment within the organization upon completing your degree. Additionally, the intern experience gives you the ability to expand your professional connections, which may be useful in the future. 

Whether you are a traditional college-age student or an adult learner, internships provide a valuable experience in applied learning. The search for an internship is similar to a job search, even when it is an unpaid opportunity. Some organizations have only a limited number of placements available, and may have far more applicants than they would be able to accommodate. With all that in mind, it is best for students to prepare in advance for any internship opportunity they wish to pursue. 

Steps to pursuing an Internship:

Discuss with your mentor the possibility of incorporating an internship into your degree plan. 

Develop/update your resume. In almost all cases, you will need to submit a resume when applying for an internship. For tips on writing or updating your resume and writing a cover letter, visit the resources we provide on our Career Services website.

Internship Search: There are many resources available to you in a search for an internship. Take advantage of many avenues in order to find the right opportunity.

We suggest:

  • Purple Briefcase: SUNY Empire’s job posting system is powered by Purple Briefcase. View and apply for career opportunities through the system.
  • InternShop: A partnership between SUNY and the NYS Business Council offering paid internship opportunities to SUNY students throughout the state. 
  • Faculty/Mentor connections: Faculty and mentors are a great resource for connections in their field. Inquire about any opportunities they are aware of or contact information they can share within organizations.
  • Personal connections/Networking: More than 80 percent of job opportunities are obtained through networking. Think about organizations you may be interested in pursuing and check to see who in your network could be a connection with that organization. 
  • Online Career and Job Resources: On our Career Services website, we list more than 40 different online databases of job opportunities.  

For more information about pursuing an internship at SUNY Empire State College, visit our Career Services site.

Other News

Getting to Know SUNY Empire State College: Interview with Clayton Steen, By Suzanne Lazar, student, SUNY Empire State College; editor, The Student Connection

Pathways to Total Health - Community Summit, Dr. Daramola N. Cabral, mentor, health sciences/allied health

Finding Neverland, By Suzanne Lazar, student, SUNY Empire State College; editor, The Student Connection

Creative Corner

Social Corner

Article Contributors

Anita DeCianni-Brown

Daramola Cabral

Neil Irwin

Suzanne Lazar

Nancy Zimpher


Take the Next Step

Ready to advance your education and career? There’s no time like the present. Apply now, or learn more about SUNY Empire at one of our information sessions.