Tips for Successful Internships

Ms. Alejandra Castillo

Ms. Alejandra Castillo, Honors alum (English Major), discussed her lived experience of internship and gave top tips for succeeding at an internship. Public Policy Internships often serve as pathways to a myriad of careers whilst enriching the undergraduate experience. Ms. Castillo spoke on her internship program with The Fund for American Studies and further illustrated the strategies and benefits of a public policy internship.
Programs Ale participated in:

The Fund for American Studies (non-profit)
Leadership in the American Presidency (led by the Ronald Reagan Institute)
• Good scholarships in this program
• FAFSA funds should apply
• Apply online at
• Ale could nominate current students (fast-tracked beyond first screening)

o Professional Growth (build CV)
o Apply knowledge
o Earn college credit
o Stand out
o Get the feel of the industry
o Accumulate new skills
o Role-models
o Mentors
o Network of alumni
o Future employers (60% chance of getting offered a job)
o Young professionals
Personal Growth
o Social skills
o Time management
o “Real world” experience
o Confidence
o Friendships
o Humility

• Don’t forget that your resume will need to be consistently restructured and tweaked for the particular institution.

• Strategies
o Meet your coworkers
o Set goals (clear idea of what you wish to get out of the experience)
o Watch and learn
o Be professional (don’t be sloppy)
o Take initiative
o Stay organized (Omnifocus app)
o Manage your time wisely
o Keep track of your projects
o Ask people out for coffee (informational interviews)
o Reflect on your experience (mission statement and an articulation of next steps)