Finding an internship: 1. UCL Advances Summer Internship recruitment fair — tips

To continue on the subject of the UCL Advances Summer Internship Programme (SIP), I wanted to explain more about the application process. The main requirement of the SIP is that you need to approach the startup yourself. After pairing up with a startup, you and the startup will need to submit a business proposal to UCL Advances in order to get funding. But the difficult part of the process for me was pairing up with a startup in the first place. There are two ways you can approach this:

1. Attend a recruitment fair
2. Find a startup yourself

I will split this post into two parts because 2. can apply to non-UCL students.

1. Attend the 3 part recruitment fair that UCL Advances organises

UCL Advances sends a company list prior to the recruitment fair:

The spreadsheet contains the company description, description of what the company is looking for, description of the internship opportunity and the possible experience the company can offer.
I found the concept useful, but the companies’ names were not disclosed so it was hard to try find more about the company. The spreadsheet format also made it difficult to read.

Go round the stalls talking to the company

Tip: You must read the company list and be ready to ask well thought out questions.
I found myself and others around me asking the same question “So, what does [insert name of company] do?”, I could see that the people at the stalls were a little tired of repeating themselves which doesn’t create the impression you want. Granted it is difficult for us to keep track of the identity code of the company and then to match it up to the floor plan of the stalls which is given to you on the day of the event. My advice is to bring a copy of the spreadsheet and ask the staff for help in matching the name of the stalls to the company as on the day there may have been a few changes and cancellations. Take a few minutes to compose yourself before approaching the stalls, re-read what the company is looking for, this can be done whilst lining up as some stalls had quite a long queue. </font></p>
Remember to leave your C.V. and ask for contact details so that you can send a follow up message.

2. Find the start up yourself in a later post…

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