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Frequently Asked Questions about Internships

  • How do I post a summer internship?
  • Can my company offer an unpaid internship? Can a student receive academic credit for an unpaid internship?
  • When is the best time to post my internship on Handshake?
  • How should I market my internship opportunities?
  • I posted my internship on Handshake, but I would like to receive more applicants. How can I increase the applicant pool?
  • I would like to extend a return offer or full-time offer to a current intern. Does CDC have guidelines surrounding this?

How do I post a summer internship?

All internship positions must be posted on Handshake in order for the Career Development Center to market the opportunities. For tips on what to include in the posting, refer to Writing an Internship Postion Description or contact the CDC.

Can my company offer an unpaid internship? Can a student receive academic credit for an unpaid internship?

No, Caltech does not have a formal program for providing academic credit for internships. In order for a position to be posted on TecherLink, the internship must be a paid position. For additional information regarding internships and compensation, refer to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Position Statement on Internships.

When is the best time to post my internship on Handshake?

Many organizations recruit during the fall and winter terms for summer hires to ensure a strong applicant pool. Starting early allows more students to apply and gives organizations a chance to fully screen applicants.

For consistency, try maintainig a predictable recruiting schedule. For example, knowing that your organization will recruit summer interns during the winter term allows the CDC to prepare students in advance and build awareness of the opportunity year round.

How should I market my internship opportunities?

The first step in marketing your internship opportunities is to create a compelling internship position description that makes student see the benefit of working for your organization and the skills they will gain.

Try developing a flyer to be distributed via email and posted around campus. Be sure to include the application deadline and Handshake job ID number. Contact the CDC for assistance.

The best way to meet prospective intern candidates is through attending on-campus events, such as career fairs, information sessions, networking events and hosting on-campus interviews.

I posted my internship on Handshake, but I would like to receive more applicants. How can I increase the applicant pool?

It is important to note that creating a brand on campus takes time. You may notice that after a few cycles of internship recruitment, your internship postings may receive more applicants. Students share their internship experiences with their peers. Over time, your internshipp program may gather traction and popularity, resulting in a larger talent pool for your organization.

I would like to extend a return offer or full-time offer to a current intern. Does CDC have guidelines surrounding this?

According to the Principles for Professional Conduct established by NACE, "Employers are expected to provide students with a reasonable amount of time to make decisions about accepting an employment offer. [Employers] are also expected to provide students with a reasonable process for making such decisions. In addition, it is improper for employers to impose undue pressure on students regarding acceptance of job offers, including pressure on the student to revoke their acceptance of a job offer from another employer."

The CDC encourages employers to allow students to fully participate in on-campus recruiting (OCR) opportunities before making a decision. For that reason, we request that students are given until one day past the end of that term's recruiting cycle to make a decision or two weeks, whichever is later, to respond to job offers.