First Internship

How to Secure Your First Internship Without Prior Experience?

First Internship is a challenging experience for most of the students. As per a report by National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), 91% of employers prefer choosing experienced candidates, where internships have a significant value. But, many students face the paradox of needing experience in their resume to get experience! 

It may seem daunting to break into the professional world but, this can be easier with a better approach. This guide will discuss some actionable strategies to secure your first internship, with experience or without experience. 

Leverage Your Academic Experience 

Your coursework holds more importance than you might think. Demonstrate your skills and knowledge vividly by highlighting your relevant projects or papers. For example, if you’re a student of engineering, detailing a complex project can showcase your problem-solving abilities and technical expertise. 

Develop Transferable Skills

Employees often seek transferable skills like communication, teamwork and problem-solving in their candidates. Reflect on your group projects, volunteering activities, or club memberships to emphasize how these experiences have honed your skills. Transferable skills are universally valued, making you a versatile candidate even for your first internship. 

Network Strategically for Your First Internship

Networking is crucial. 85% of jobs are taken up through networking, according to LinkedIn. Make sure to utilize the people in your current network, such as professors, alumni, and classmates. Attend career fairs, industry seminars, and webinars to meet professionals in your field. Engage with them on LinkedIn and follow up with personalized messages expressing your interest and seeking advice. 

Tailor Your Resume and Cover Letter 

Applications that are generic rarely stand out. For each internship you apply for, make sure you submit a customized cover letter and CV. Conduct some research on the company to find out what particular abilities and attributes they value. Integrate your experience and skills with their needs while expressing your enthusiasm for the position and the company.

Utilize University Resources

Many universities offer career services, including resume workshops, mock interviews, and internship listings for students to get their first internship. Take advantage of these resources. Career advisors can provide valuable feedback on your application materials and interview techniques, helping you present yourself as a compelling candidate. 

Engage in Extracurricular Activities

Join clubs, societies, or student organizations related to your field of interest. Leadership roles in these groups can significantly bolster your resume. For example, being the treasurer of a club demonstrates your ability to manage finances and work within a team, while organizing events showcases your planning and coordination skills. 


Volunteering can be a great way to gain relevant experience. Look for volunteer opportunities that align with your career interests. For instance, if you’re interested in getting the first internship in marketing, volunteer to manage social media for a local non-profit. These roles not only build your resume but also provide practical experience and networking opportunities.

Showcase Personal Projects

Personal projects can demonstrate your passion and initiative. Create a portfolio of projects that are relevant to your field. For example, a computer science student could build a website or a mobile app, while an aspiring journalist might maintain a blog. These projects provide concrete evidence of your skills and dedication. 

Take Online Courses and Certifications 

Online courses can help bridge the gap in your experience. Platforms like Coursera, edX, and LinkedIn Learning offer courses on a wide range of topics. Completing relevant courses and earning certifications can enhance your resume and show potential employers your commitment to continuous learning. 

Prepare for Interviews 

Once you’re offered an interview for your first internship, being prepared is essential. Conduct an in-depth analysis of the company to learn about its principles, culture, and most recent accomplishments. Practice common interview questions and craft a compelling pitch which demonstrates your qualifications, experiences, and passion. Mock interviews with peers or career counsellors can help you gain confidence and offer constructive feedback. 

Apply Broadly and Persistently  

Rejections are a necessary part of the process, so don’t let them discourage you. To improve your chances, submit applications to a wide range of internships. It’s important to remain persistent. Each application and interview is an opportunity for you to hone and refine your approach. 

Follow Up 

Following an interview, send a thank-you note outlining your interest in the role and expressing gratitude for the opportunity. This small gesture can leave a positive mark, keeping you on top of mind for the employer.
This may be challenging to get your first internship without any experience, but the right approach can be your savior. As your career development partners, we are here to help with navigating the complexities with remote work environments and provide tailored solutions. Explore our Career Enhancement Services to make your next career move with confidence.