5 Reasons You Might NOT Be Getting Hired in NYC
I received some fan mail the other day from a student in Michigan who really wants to intern in NYC. She feels like the companies in NYC only want students who are local and that the internships are unpaid (for the most part). She’s not sure if she should stay home to work and save up money -- or just take the leap. She wants advice.
I’m sure many of you can relate to what this student is feeling. I wanted to provide a few pointers to help you get hired as an intern in NYC:
1. You Don’t Understand the Internship Timeline. Right now, companies are accepting fall internship applications. Most fall internships start in late August or after Labor Day and run through the first week of December. If you are emailing employers, make sure you clearly state that you are looking for a FALL internship opportunity and that you are available to start in August or September. If you are just sending a general email, they might not understand when you want to intern.
2. Big Companies Might Not Have Fall Programs. Before you start emailing companies about their fall programs, you want to make sure they offer fall internships. Most of the Fortune 500 companies only offer summer opportunities. However, they will start recruiting for summer 2014 as early as September, and some have November deadlines. Again, you must be clear in your email/cover letter as to which position you are applying to (semester-wise).
3. You Aren’t Connecting the Dots. If you are a student going to school in Michigan but you want to intern in New York City, you need to explain that in the cover letter. You also don’t want to sound like its ‘just an idea’. If the employer doesn’t think you are 100% serious about the position, they might not want to take the time and interview you.
4. You Are Applying For Opportunities That Don’t Make Sense. If you must take a paid internship opportunity and you are 100% set on it, don’t waste your time or the employer’s time applying for unpaid opportunities. Research online, scan internship postings and only apply for the PAID opportunities. If you know of a company that offers a paid opportunity but you don’t see an internship listing posted, go to the company website and find out how to apply.
5. You Don’t Have a Clear Plan. Going to a place like NYC for an internship is a HUGE deal and requires a ton of planning. You have to think about all of the costs you are going to incur (do the research on housing, entertainment, transportation, etc.) and make a budget for yourself.
6. You are Doubting Yourself. I went to NYC as a freshman in college. No one was doing that -- I got it done. Don’t just think about it and talk about it -- take the necessary steps to achieve it. If money is an issue, you can get a part-time job waiting tables when you get there. You will do what you need to do to make it happen. You can do anything you want -- continue to think big!