This post is mostly for sophomores and juniors in college. And maybe freshmen as well. I want to share something that happened to me over my freshman and sophomore year, which I wish I would have known about. During the first two years of college, everything is in transition. A lot of things are coming your way and you are doing your best to deal with them. Being caught in that process, it is difficult sometimes to look ahead toward the future. The future being a week, a month or a few months down the road. This is what happened to me.
During the fall of my sophomore year, I was so caught up in my classes and my extra-curriculars that I forgot to look ahead into the spring and the summer. Sophomore year is the year when most people begin to intern at different places, take part in Fellowships that help them get into grad school and begin to do research. In my case, I did not have the clarity of mind to look ahead and look into things that I could do with my spring semester. As a result, when I finally got around to that (around December/January), there were many programs that looked really interesting and that I would have applied to but by that time, the deadlines had already passed. It is a horrible feeling to know that you could have done something but missed the deadlines by a few days. I learned from this experience and this year, as a junior (I still can’t believe that I am a junior in college already…) I began looking into opportunities for the summer as soon as I started school in September. I am not going to miss any deadlines for not looking into programs early enough. I am looking at two programs in the public policy fields, the PPIA Fellowship and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Internship, which I will link below. (Jessie Sanchez, another blogger took part in the PPIA Fellowship as well!)
So, overall, what I want to get across is that the time to look for internships is NOW! Do not wait until a few months before the summer. The earlier you look into these opportunities, the more opportunities there will be available.