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Answering your biggest questions

January 24, 2011

It’s been a little over six weeks since we launched our Answers forum, and in that time, we’ve received a healthy outpouring of questions from users like you. Today, I thought we’d focus on a few of the ones that get asked the most – and offer up some possible solutions.

How do I decide the right keyword to use in my search?

We list more U.S. internship postings than anyone, but occasionally it can be hard to find specific types of internships in a certain area – even if they really do exist. One problem is that different companies might use different terminology to describe essentially the same job.

To solve this, I suggest entering the term you originally tried to search into Wikipedia. If you can find an entry, click on it and scroll down until you see a list of related terms. Then, where applicable, try using those to search.

Remember: When in doubt, start broad.

Is open to foreign students studying on a visa?

Yes, we welcome foreign students to the site. Non-citizens can get internships in the United States, but a lot depends on the type of visa certification you have,whether the internship is directly related to your line of study and the willingness of the hiring company to work with immigration services.

In most cases,you’ll need a J-1 sponsored visa in order to intern in the U.S. Even if you have one, you should always ask if the employer can hire international students early in the application process. Some businesses will decide they can’t afford to deal with the hassle of filing compliance paperwork with the government, but others willing to hire you will appreciate your candidness. Send your questions directly to the human resource department – they’ll know the policy better than anyone else.

Can I attach a document to my resume?

Yes … you can actually attach several, if you want. I just wrote a new article explaining this process in Student Resources. Scroll down to the bottom to see how it’s done.

What kind of internship should a ______ major search for?

These are probably better questions for a college counselor, professor or TA. But you can also use the same trick I outlined in the first question by searching your major on Wikipedia and finding its related terms.

Are there any internships on this site for high school students?

Though we don’t specifically keep track of whether or not an internship is open to high school students, we’ve heard that some of our posted internships are available to young-but-qualified applicants. Obviously, anything that says “college credit required' won’t fall into this category.

Our resume-building tool in ‘My Profile’ does allow you to indicate that you’re currently enrolled in high school. Without a college listed, you won’t be able to reach a 100% complete score. But if you list activities, achievements and other details (and take the Internship Predictor), you can still fill in enough items to rate very strongly in employer searches.

Have something else on your mind? Head over to Answers and post it to the crowd. Oh, and please answer a few if you get the chance … we want you to help each other!

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