An internship helps you explore your career choices and develop a professional attitude. Writing an impressive resume is essential for securing an internship in the organisation of your choice. It shows your potential skills and abilities to the employer and increases your chances of getting shortlisted. In this article, we explore the steps involved in writing a great resume for an internship, along with a template and sample resume for your guidance.
What is a resume for internship?
A resume for an internship is the CV that you use while applying for an internship in an organisation. You typically use it while starting a new career. Since you may not have much experience at this time, an internship resume primarily focuses on your educational qualification, skills and abilities. While it can be difficult to decide what to include in your internship resume, it also gives you an opportunity to reflect on your unique qualities that distinguish you from other candidates.
You can use an internship resume to highlight how you can contribute to the company's growth. Think of your achievements and situations when you displayed exceptional skills to deal with an issue. However, include only those skills and qualities that are relevant to the internship. Prepare a separate resume for each internship position you apply for. This will make your resume more focused and relevant.
Read more: How to Create an Internship Report
How to write a resume for an internship
Following are the essential steps involved in writing a professional resume for an internship:
1. Review the internship job description
Read the job description for the internship position you are applying for. Note down the specific skills and abilities the employer is looking for. This will help you decide whether the internship matches your career profile. Secondly, you can use specific words from the job description while listing your strengths and qualities in the resume. This will keep your resume relevant to the position and also help it pass the applicant tracking system (ATS). Many employers use the ATS software to manage applications. This software automatically filters the applications based on the keywords set by the employer.
2. Research the organisation
Perform preliminary research on the organisation you are planning to join. This will give you an idea about its work culture and value system. You can then determine whether the company's values match yours and whether you should work for it. If you decide to go ahead, you can use this information for your resume, cover letter and interview to show the employer how your personal values match theirs.
You can start your research from the company's website. The 'about us' and 'work with us' sections would be more relevant in this regard. In addition to the company website, you can also browse through employee reviews on various job portals. Similarly, customer reviews on various business review websites can give you further insight into the company.
3. Include your name and contact information
Include your complete name, postal address, email ID and phone number at the top of the resume so that the recruiter has these details readily available with them. Your address can also help you stand out if you live near the office. You can also include links to your social media profiles. However, make sure they portray a professional brand to have a positive impact.
4. Write an objective statement
An objective statement presents your career goals and objectives and highlights how the given internship opportunity fits your long-term goals. It should tell the employer how you can contribute to the company while working as an intern and why they should choose you over other candidates. Consider including your passion and knowledge for the position. Use the relevant keywords from the job description to increase your chances of attracting the employer's attention.
Ensure that the length of the objective statement is within two or three sentences. This section should include only the best of your most relevant skills and strengths for the given internship position.
5. Highlight your skills
Include your technical and soft skills in this section. Technical skills are related to the specialised knowledge about your area of expertise, while soft skills are general skills you developed over a longer period of time. For example, if you are applying for a software programmer internship, you need to know the relevant programming languages, which would fall under technical skills. Similarly, if you have strong interpersonal and teamwork skills, you can contribute more effectively to your job, although those skills are not the core part of programming.
The skills section helps the employer assess your suitability for the role. When educational qualification is common between candidates, skills usually distinguish you from other applicants.
6. Include your work experience (optional)
If you are a fresher, you can describe your volunteering experience or any short-term assignments you took up. If you are an experienced professional looking for a career change, you can list your previous job details in this section. Since you are applying for an internship, you need not worry about your previous jobs being directly related to the new one. However, consider highlighting the transferable skills from your previous roles that would be useful for the internship.
7. Describe your achievements
The achievements section details the awards and recognitions you earned. It acts as strong support to your skills and abilities and also shows the employer that you are motivated towards your career. You can talk about the academic projects you completed successfully and the competitions you participated in. For example, if you contributed to your school magazine, won a debate competition or participated in an inter-college quiz competition, you can mention the details in this section.
8. Include your educational qualifications
List your educational qualifications, training, certifications and professional affiliations. Start with the highest qualification, going down to the lower ones. The standard practice is to include the qualification, along with the name of the educational institution and the month and year of passing. If you earned any scholarships or exceptional grades, be sure to highlight such achievements. For example, if you were a school topper in the 10th standard, you can include it in your 10th class education details.
9. Add references
Adding references is of special importance in an internship resume. That is because you would be at the beginning of a new career and may not have a solid backing of relevant work experience. In such cases, getting someone to vouch for your competence and credibility can be a strong positive factor in your favour. Talk to your professors, project guides and friends employed in good positions. Ask for their recommendation and whether you can use their names in the reference. Each reference would typically include the name, designation, organisation and contact details of the person.
10. Format your resume
Ensure that your resume looks uncluttered and professional. Use a professional font, such as Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman. You can bold, underline or italicise the fonts to highlight the important points. Increasing or decreasing the font size is yet another way to distinguish the main points from the surrounding content.
Read more: Resume Format Guide (with Examples)
Resume for internship template
Here is a simple template for an internship resume to help you get started:
*[Your complete name]
[Your phone number]
[Your email ID]
[Up to three complete or incomplete sentences highlighting your career goals, strengths and suitability for the given internship position]
[Bulleted list of your technical and soft skills relevant to the internship position]
[Details of your previous work experience, if any, including any volunteering experience or short-term assignments, whether or not related to the internship]
[Details of any awards and recognitions you might have earned during your school or college education or during professional development courses]
[List of your educational qualifications, certifications and professional memberships, along with the year of completion and the name of the institution]
[List of two or three references, along with the name, designation, organisation and contact details]*
Read more: How To Make a Resume for Your First Job
Sample resume for internship
Here is a sample resume for internship given for your guidance:
234, Pali Hill
Mumbai – 400050
MBA in finance with a passion for portfolio management, looking for an internship in a reputed asset management company, where I can apply my strong fundamental research and technical analysis skills to create wealth for the client. I aspire to build on my experience in portfolio management to become a leading fund manager in the industry.
Strong fundamental research skills
Working knowledge of technical analysis tools, including chart patterns, price-volume relationship, average directional index (ADI), moving average convergence divergence (MACD), stochastic oscillator and relative strength index
Eye for details
Strong communication skills (written and oral)
College topper in MBA first and second year
Passed CBSE 12th board exams with distinction
MBA (Finance) – 2019-21 – Dhanraj PG College (Affiliated to the University of Bombay)
B.Com (Hons) – 2016-19 – Seth Chhaganlal Degree College, Mumbai
Grade 12 – 2016 – St. Mary's High School (CBSE)
1. Mr. Arun Agarwal, Professor, Dhanraj PG College. Ph: +91-XXXXXXXXXX. Email: email@example.com
2. Ms. Pallavi Tyagi, Lecturer, Seth Chhaganlal Degree College. Ph: +91-XXXXXXXXXX. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org*