Here, We Do: Students of Internship Plus (FQ 2020)

We know that not every student can afford to take an unpaid internship. The Internship Plus Program addresses the issue by awarding up to $2,500 in financial assistance to students who have an unpaid internship opportunity and demonstrate financial need.

Through this program, many students are able to gain important experience in their field of interest. Here is what some of them had to say.

Kathia interned at Dim Events

Kathia Hernandez

My internship has helped me in learning what I want to pursue in the future. I can participate in many of my extracurricular activities because of scholarships like these. By having more time to focus on what I want to build in my community and by helping others through service I can further my passions.

It has been a great 6 months working as an intern at Dim Events, and it really encouraged me to start planning out my own business plan.

I have learned a lot about building a community virtually and campaigning for things that I am passionate about such as, women empowerment, Black Lives Matter, and Latinx community issues. I have also moved up in my internship, from being an entrepreneurship intern to becoming an intern manager.


Theodora interned at The Creative Process

Tea’s profile page on The Creative Process website

The experience I had working for The Creative Process opened doors to a plethora of creative media opportunities—it’s become a bridge into a rich realm of marketable skills and experiences.

As an associate podcast producer and interviewer, my tasks revolved around listening, editing, and providing insight on interviews, with the end goal of conducting an interview myself. If it weren’t for my Internship Plus award, I would not have been able to accomplish as much as I had, considering I would’ve spent more time working in order to save for tuition and loans.

My internship experience has encouraged me to explore opportunities in media and content creation, in addition to podcasting and journalism.

Navigating the waters of such a wide-ranging realm of creative freedom has given me a unique opportunity to make an impact with artists and students on an international scale by advocating for the immersion of the creative arts in our daily lives.


Aashka interned at Trouvaiz

Trouvaiz’s Instagram page that Aashka managed

Being in the Marketing Honors program along with taking two other classes and taking on an internship was a challenge. It was very helpful doing an internship that gave me the freedom to take the marketing strategy the way I preferred.

This pandemic has put a financial strain on everyone, the Internship Plus Award scholarship was a huge help in lifting of that financial stress off of my shoulders. It allowed me to take on this internship which has greatly expanded my skills in social media marketing.

I have more confidence in my major and have a better idea of what i would like to do job wise for someone who is graduating next year.

COVID has rendered all financially fragile at the moment as jobs are hard to find and internships are not willing to pay. Getting closer to graduation you realize that you won’t have these opportunities of financial support while obtaining actual skills in your career. I would like to thank this program for giving me the opportunity to take on this internship especially in such a prime time as I am graduating next year.


Justin interned at Joel Hall Dancers & Center

I started a marketing and media internship with Joel Hall Dancers & Center at the beginning of the Fall 2020 semester. For 46+ years, Joel Hall has established a black-led non-profit organization that has focused on being an inclusive and diverse art incubation center. My job was to help them celebrate their rich jazz history, sharing Joel’s story via social media outlets, video editing, and digital marketing campaigns.

The internship and the Internship Plus award allowed me to use my knowledge to assist local art communities thrive.

My main goal with my digital marketing degree is to help local Chicago organizations create a professional online presence and build digital media content that reflects their identity. I believe through this Internship Plus Program, I was able to represent DePaul University and put our mission into action. Since DePaul is proudly a Chicago institution, it felt great working as an extension of DePaul to build off of what other great, local businesses Chicago has to offer.

Applications for the Spring Internship Plus program are now open. Apply on the Scholarship Connect by February 28th, 2021.

How to Get an Internship or Job When Hiring is All Virtual

Learn how to navigate virtual recruitment and stand out to employers online.

Guidance Provided By: The Handshake Team

Recruiting season may look different this year, but luckily thousands of employers are searching for students on Handshake. So, how can you be ready to land your next job or internship virtually this year? Follow these steps to make the most of your online job hunt. 

Complete your Handshake profile

This is always our first piece of advice for student job seekers, because your profile is fundamental to getting hired on Handshake. Employers are searching for students to recruit based on the information in their profiles such as major, graduation date, and interests (job type, cities, roles). And you can highlight all of the things that make you uniquely qualified including your courses, organizations, work experience and skills. When you complete your profile, you’ll be more likely to receive direct messages from employers inviting you to events or to apply for jobs.

The next step is crafting your resume with the information included in your profile. Upload and save your resume to your Handshake account so it’s ready when you’re applying to jobs. You can upload more than one version of your resume—so consider adapting it for different roles that you want to apply for.

Start networking online

You’ve probably heard that networking is important, and it can sound a bit intimidating. But “networking” really just means making a connection with someone from your school, extracurriculars, volunteer groups—or just reaching out to someone you don’t know who shares the same professional interests. There are many different ways to start networking online. 

Find alumni of your school on Handshake who have or had roles that you’re interested in and send them a message. Introduce yourself and tell them you’d like to learn more about their experience. Ask them a question you have about their organization or how they began their career. And don’t forget to thank them in advance for connecting and sharing their advice.

Try looking for online professional interest groups to make connections with people in the fields that you’re exploring. It may take some research; you can also reach out to your professors or club leaders for their suggestions.

Stay up-to date on employers 

When you see an employer on Handshake that you like, click the Follow button on their page. If you’re on the Handshake app, click the star button. Following employers on Handshake is so useful because you’ll receive email alerts when they post new jobs and events. Plus, it helps improve your job recommendations. The more you explore and follow employers you’d like to work for, the more relevant your recommendations become.

Additionally, you can set search engine alerts for your top employers and follow their social media accounts. These are easy ways to learn about new initiatives, jobs, and other notable updates on their organization. 

Attend virtual recruiting events

One of the biggest opportunities to connect with employers this year is at virtual events on Handshake. Employers are hosting group and 1:1 sessions to give students a look at their organizations and to recruit for open jobs and internships. Be sure to check your email for event announcements and log in often to see upcoming events for students at your school. You’ll also be notified when employers you follow are attending virtual fairs on Handshake. 

When you register for a virtual fair, you can sign up early for sessions with the employers you want to meet and learn more about—a major advantage over traditional career fairs. Don’t miss these prime recruiting opportunities! 

Read our guide to virtual events, with tips and tricks to know before you attend.

Practice for virtual interviews

Just like in-person interviews, it takes some practice to get comfortable with virtual interviews. This is the time to call in some reinforcements. Ask a friend or family member to help you practice. Start with your “elevator pitch”—a brief introduction about you, your background and career goals. Then have them ask you a few common interview questions and ask them for any feedback on your answers. While you don’t need to memorize exactly what you’ll say, it’s very important to get more comfortable answering interview questions. 

Check out our post with more ways to impress employers during a virtual interview.

Chat with your career center

Your school’s career center staff are an incredible resource, so take advantage of their knowledge. They can answer your job and internship questions, help you craft your resume and cover letters, or even practice for virtual interviews. They also have insight on employers that are hiring at your school and those that may have strong alumni networks. Call your career center and schedule an appointment—they’ll be happy to help you. 

Apply apply apply

You can’t get a job if you don’t apply, right? It may go without saying, but you’ll greatly increase your chances of getting hired if you apply to a lot of open jobs. And try to keep an open mind, especially if you’re not quite sure what you want to do. Now is the time to gain different experiences and learn what you do and don’t like about a job. 

Luckily Handshake will surface recommendations based on your profile, to help you find the jobs you want to apply for. Once you have your profile filled in and resumes uploaded, you’ll be able to apply to many jobs on Handshake in just a few clicks.

Be proactive and follow up

No matter where your job search takes you, be consistent and follow up. Whether it’s a message from an employer, an application, virtual event or interview—always consider three p’s: be proactive, prompt and polite. For interviews, whether informational or for an open job, it’s best practice to send a thank you note within 24 hours. In your thank you note, share something specific that you enjoyed learning or talking about, and reiterate your interest in the job, career path, etc. 

If you discussed an open job or internship with an employer during a virtual event, make sure to apply as soon as possible. If the employers shared their contact information with you, send them a note thanking them and letting them know you’ve applied.

Your online actions are especially important when recruiting is virtual. If you can’t make a great impression in person, it’s best to be extra responsive and appreciative to the connections you make online. 

Log into Handshake now to get started on your virtual job search!

6 Ways to Make the Most of a Remote Internship

Guidance Provided By: The Handshake Team


If you were to form your idea of an internship based solely on movies and TV, you’d probably picture long hours spent in a skyscraper somewhere, picking up lunch for executives and making copies all day long. Thankfully, the reality of internships isn’t quite so limited: internships can be found virtually everywhere, in any industry, and can be far more hands-on. At Handshake, for example, interns can do everything from push out code on the mobile app to writing articles for the blog!

But what happens when your internship takes place remotely, eliminating the in-office aspects of your program? Whether you originally planned to work from home during your internship or not, there are plenty of ways to maximize your experience as a remote intern to make the best impression and learn the most about your career path.

1. Set boundaries, even if your hours and location are flexible

Because remote internships are often project-based rather than hourly, it can be easy to treat them like homework, squeezing in a few minutes of work here and there between other commitments. For Handshake Social & Editorial Manager Brinton Botkin, setting “office hours” was key to succeeding in her remote internships during college.

“Even though my internships focused more on the finished work I turned in and less on the hours I spent, I still treated it like a regular in-office job,” she says. “I would block off time on my calendar and post up in a coffee shop, the library, or even in my kitchen at home and turn everything else on Do Not Disturb while I worked. Setting aside a dedicated time and space for my internship work helped me ensure that my deadlines were met, I was prompt and communicative with my managers, and that I could balance the rest of my life, too—I wasn’t trying to multitask on my internship responsibilities while at my coffee shop job or in class.”

2. Find time to connect with mentors

In a remote internship, you don’t get the same everyday face-time with colleagues that you might enjoy in an office environment. In order to supplement this, consider requesting a standing video meeting with your manager, or requesting 15-minute “walk and talks” phone calls to get to know people in different functions. It’s common for interns to invite colleagues out for casual coffee chats in traditional office environments, so consider this your chance to accomplish the same thing from afar! You can also connect with peers and other young professionals on Handshake to help build connections within your desired industry and learn about the path ahead.

3. Practice overcommunication

When you don’t have the benefit of physical proximity, it can be hard to feel connected to your management during an internship. Chat with your manager about how best they’d like updates about your work, and make sure to follow through via those channels—if they prefer emails, consider sending a weekly email recap about lessons you’ve learned, projects you’ve made progress on, and any questions that might have arisen during the week. If they prefer face-to-face meetings, come to your video check-ins prepared with notes, questions, and ideas.

4. Ask for feedback

The biggest benefit to any internship is getting real-life experience in the workplace, which can help shape your future plans and mold your skillset to suit your career goals. In order to maximize your remote internship experience, be clear with your manager that you desire feedback so that you can continue to grow as a professional. This might mean hopping on a quick call to review changes they’ve made to a project draft you delivered, or using suggestions and comments in a Google Sheet.

When soliciting feedback from colleagues, it’s key to accept said feedback graciously; think of critique as a favor, because it will help you improve your work. The lessons you take away from your internship will follow you into your first full-time job in your desired field, so capture every bit of advice you can!

5. Document your achievements

Whether you spend a month in your role or chug away for a whole semester, the time often flies by—and so can your projects. If you keep a record of major focus areas and accomplishments over the course of your internship, you can look back and reflect on your growth at the conclusion of your internship. This can benefit both you and your manager; a robust list of tangible achievements can help them quantify the benefit of their organization’s internship program, and you can use the same log to update your resume, fill your portfolio, and inform special skills for your Handshake profile.

6. Ask for a letter of recommendation

A persuasive professional endorsement from a past internship can prove extremely useful when applying for full-time work after graduation. Simply use this guide when asking for a letter of recommendation or to use your manager as a future professional reference.

There’s no reason why working remotely during your internship should hold you back from any of the advantages of a traditional work environment. With the right attitude, you can find many ways to make a great impression on your colleagues, forge lasting connections with peers, and take valuable lessons away from your experience.

Want more internship guidance? For additional insights into the world of internships, check out our intern content series and read real lessons from students who’ve been in your shoes.