The single, most important thing you can do to get employed in renewable energy is to complete an internship in renewable energy. But it’s not that easy to do. Renewable energy companies have many candidates for each internship, prefer rising juniors and seniors and often rely on internal recommendations. So, you need a plan and a lot of determination. Here’s our advice.
Any Internship is Better than None
If you’re a freshman and even a sophomore going after your first internship, be open to internships outside of clean energy. You don’t have a lot of experience (bad thing), but you have at least two more summers ahead (a good thing). Be happy to get any internship that will build some good basic skills, give you a practice lap in the working world and produce a good recommendation at the end — all of which you can use next summer to get an internship in renewable energy. Bottom line, don’t sit around all summer because the only internships available were not in clean energy.
Internships Matching Your Major
Once you’re ready to target an internship in renewable energy, you should look for an internship that lines up with your major. An environmental science major will have a harder time interning at Tesla than a mechanical or electrical engineer. But, the ES major will find plenty of project management or analyst internship roles at solar and energy efficiency companies.
Read, Talk & Apply
Now, everyone needs to start spending 2 to 3 hours/week during school (at least) doing this:
- Read to find listings, leads and tips
- Talk to former interns to develop contacts
- Apply for LOTS of openings (>10)
But how specifically do you do that, right? Try this:
- Find tons of summer internships in renewable energy on our job board by setting the Term filter (at this link) to “summer intern 2019.” Apply!
- Use the Degree and Major filter to zero in on the internships that match your degree and major
- Read all our short but awesome articles on both internships and informational interviewing
- Find and talk to young people like you in renewables by using our Everyman networking platform
Now is the time to find that awesome summer internship in renewable energy! Start putting the time in now.
The is the one of four articles on on getting an internship in renewable energy: Landing that Perfect Summer Internship in Renewable Energy: Tips & Tricks | Renewable Energy Internships: Unpaid may pay off | Far Away from Home? Be Open to a Road-trip Renewable Energy Internship | Should You Take an Internship in Renewable Energy After Graduation?