Top 10 Tips for
Internship Interviews

Internship interviews can be intimidating. The competition for internships is fierce. There are only a limited number of internship positions available and applicants need to stand out from the crowd.

Employers want to hire people who are confident, relaxed and ready to meet challenges. An unprepared internship candidate is unlikely to make the right impression and be successful.

10 Essential Internship Interview Tips

Follow these 10 tips and techniques and secure the internship position you want.

1. Do the preparation

Do your homework and find out as much as you can about the company.

  • go to the company's website and start off by memorizing the company's mission statement. This is what the company wants to achieve and you should keep it in mind when responding to questions
  • find out as much as you can about the company's current activities, employees, structure and clients
  • there is nothing that impresses an interviewer more than a candidate that shows a real interest in the company and its goals

Find out more about using your research to maximum effect in internship interviews at preparing for a job interview

2. Choose the right interview dress

Candidates often ask "How should I dress for an internship?"

First impressions are always important. It is sometimes difficult to know what the appropriate attire is for a particular company. See how to find out the company dress code at dress for an interview

3. Prepare answers to internship interview questions

Think about why this internship opportunity is one you want and one you would be good at. You will be asked questions around your interests, skills and suitability as they relate to the internship job.

Spend time before the interview preparing answers to typically asked questions.

Expect questions such as:

  • Why do you want an internship with our company?
  • Why would you be a good internship candidate?
  • How does this internship further your career goals?

Get help with answering internship interview questions

Standard Interview Questions

4. Prepare answers to behavioral internship interview questions

You will be asked questions that explore the behaviors or competencies required in an internship.

Preparing for these internship behavioral interview questions beforehand will allow you to answer fluently and positively.

5. Bring the right documents

What should you bring to an internship interview?

Employers like something solid on which to evaluate you. If you have a relevant work sample bring it with you. An assignment, presentation, writing example, term paper or research project may be relevant to the internship opportunity.

Include copies of your resume and any character references you may have. It is advisable to have your driving license and Social Security card with you.

6. Prepare good questions to ask

Think about some insightful questions you can ask the interviewer. Preparing relevant and thoughtful questions to ask shows that you have spent time thinking about the internship and whether it is the right opportunity for you.

Examples of smart internship interview questions to ask include:

  • Who will I be reporting to and who will I be working with?
  • How will most of my time be spent?
  • What types of projects will I be working on?
  • What are your main expectations of the internship position?
  • What have been the biggest challenges for previous interns here?
  • What can I expect to learn from this internship?

You can ask the interviewer about themselves such as How did you start in this company? and What do you enjoy about working here?

7. Make a good impression from the word go

Create a favorable first impression by:

  • getting there on time and greeting the doorman, receptionist and everyone else you meet politely
  • speak confidently when you introduce yourself
  • remember to turn off your cell phone
  • complete any forms accurately and completely
  • greet your interviewer with a firm handshake and ensure your body language is positive throughout the process

Internship candidates are often nervous, find out how to control interview anxiety.

8. Close the interview strongly

End your interview with confidence. The final stage of the job interview is critical, you need to leave the interviewer with the impression that you are the right candidate for the internship position.

There are a number of excellent ways to conduct your closing.

9. Send a thank you letter after internship interviews

Send a thank you note within 24 hours.

The follow up letter or thank you note is an excellent opportunity to reinforce why you are suitable for the internship and to restate your enthusiasm for the company. Adapt this example of an internship interview thank you letter

10. Proactively follow up

If you have not heard back from the employer within a reasonable time it is advisable to follow up. This sample follow up email can be used for when the employer has not got back to you.

Internship interview questions and answers

Expect behavioral or competency-based internship interview questions that explore these core competencies employers look for in an intern.

Student Job Interview Questions

What to say when you introduce yourself in an internship interview

The question "Tell me about yourself" will be one of the first things you will be asked in your internship job interview.  It is advisable to prepare your self introduction and be able to answer fluently and confidently. Some top tips include:

  • tailor your introduction to the specific internship and how your skills will add value to the internship and company
  • focus on those core competencies that are of use in most jobs and work settings
  • highlight your strengths and how they will contribute to your success as an intern
  • display enthusiasm and energy - these qualities are always welcome in an intern

Find great sample interview answers at Tell me about yourself

Students strengths and weaknesses list

Your Internship Job Application


Sample Internship Resume


Internship Resume Objective


Internship Cover Letter

Entry Level Resumes

Latest Update - Internships 2023

Ziprecruiter and state that the majority of salaries for an intern fall between $11 and $17 per hour in the United States. The average salary is $15 per hour.

Although there is ongoing debate about unpaid internships, a number of companies, typically in the arts area, do not pay their interns. However, importantly, research shows that more than 60% of interns are eventually offered full-time positions.

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