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How I got an Internship my Freshman Year of College

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I know most college freshman aren’t thinking about internships and their future careers, though it never hurts to start early. I feel that during college it is important for me to try out as working with different types of companies in my field. Since I am majoring in Advertising, I want to try working at a small company, a large one, one with a large audience, one with a small audience and so on. So when I read an email that a local company was looking for interns I decided to apply despite me only being a freshman.

To be completely honest when I applied to the internship I didn’t think I would get an interview. I knew that I had valuable skills to offer to the company, though I didn’t really know who I was up against. So when I got an email asking me to meet for an interview I was shocked and excited.  With that being said, I’ll let you in on some of the things I did before I got my internship that I believe really helped me out.

I had Previous work Experience

With my experience in photography from high school, I was able to get a summer job taking and editing photos for a small company back home. Through this job I was able to get experience producing images for an actual company. The photos I would produce would end up online so they had to be of great quality. This position helped me refine my work and allowed me to really be confident with photography.

I Joined the Right Student Organizations

My first semester of college I really just joined student organizations to make friends, though I also made sure to join ones that were related to what I was studying. I joined two student organizations that produced content, which is something I would be doing in my future career. I was able to write articles and take photos which I later compiled into a portfolio.

I had a Portfolio

All throughout high school I had taken photography classes. As a requirement by the program I was in, I was forced to produce photos every week. That being said, I had many photos by the time I graduated. I chose the best ones and placed them into a google drive folder as a temporary portfolio. Although I had never moved on to placing the photos on a website or an Instagram page, I did have them in a place where I could share them with anyone. So when I applied to the internship, I just added a link to this google drive folder.  I was also able to add all of the content I had produced for the two student organizations I had joined my first semester.

Going back, I wish I would have made a official looking portfolio. Though I think that the reason I got away with having such an unofficial portfolio was because the company I applied to was a small startup.

I Applied to a Small Local Company

I believe that the main reason I was able to get an internship my freshman year, was due to the fact that the company I applied to was just staring out. The company was just looking for someone to write blog posts and take photos. Although I had done both of those things before, I still didn’t have as much experience as I thought I needed. It turns out that since they were just starting out, they were in dire need of someone to take photos of their products and create content for their blog. Being that I had a decent amount of time working with a camera, post processing software and writing, I got the internship.

I Marketed my best Talents

During my interview I made sure to emphasize my best talents. Aside from the content I had produced I made sure to talk about how working for many different people throughout my working life has made me a great employee. I spoke about how I was patient and a great listener and also how I managed to learn to use software essentially on my own. I believe that mentioning these skills during the interview aided the interviewer in understanding who I was and how I might fit into their company.

While I realize that my set of circumstances is extremely unique and fortunate, I wanted to write this to give you all a sense of how I got my first internship. Let me know in the comments below, about your internships and how you managed to get them. Thanks for reading!

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