How To Land A Summer Internship

Sorry that this title is a little (edit: extremely) misleading. If you’re here to get a summer internship, I can tell you now you’re on the wrong website. All I may do is share the amazing (first part) of my summer while interning in New York City, and (best part) no nepotism involved. How I landed my summer internship is quite a story, and if I believed in miracles then maybe this would be one.

I came to William & Mary not knowing that I wanted to pursue equity research in the financial services industry, rather, I wanted to be Dr. Draper and pursue biology. The only way I figured that out was by going after opportunities and exploring every facet of an activity to better understand if a given topic really was something of interest. Two examples offered at William & Mary include Point 72 Case Competition to explore equity research and Grant Thornton Case Competition to explore federal consulting.

It would be hypocritical of me to tell you to start getting involved early, because I didn’t even know what I was majoring in until my sophomore year. I started doing things that fascinated me, and participated in my first competition as early as my freshman year, joined five business school clubs, applied to countless corporate company conferences (I have a list if you want to email me for access), and became intimate with my LinkedIn profile during my first two years at William & Mary. Am I a try hard? Yes, definitely.

Soon I was applying to multiple business related summer internships, and with every interview I learned how to better tell “my story”. I fondly look back on the interview questions I had to answer in the back of a 12 passenger van during an Alternative Breaks trip over Spring Break. No rest for the wicked — that day determined my summer plans.

Early June, I arrived in New York City to intern in the equity research department of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. It was within the first week that I knew this was the full-time career path for me, and now writing this blog the Tuesday after my internship has ended, I know for a fact that equity research is what I’d like to pursue. I could speak more to this, but I digress.

The beauty of an internship is that it is a short-term experience for a potential long-term career. If you’re proactive enough, you may be able to score a summer internship after your sophomore year, but regardless, you can make the most of your summer by doing on-campus research, applying for a part-time job in your hometown, shadowing a local professional, studying abroad, pursuing a passion… you can make your summer meaningful without watching Netflix. That’s something I’d highly suggest to anyone and everyone.

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