There are three ways to find computer science internships: post-secondary educational institutions, job posting boards, and volunteer programs. A computer science internship is typically arranged by the school of computer science, as part of a degree or diploma in computer science. Computer science programs provide a combination of theoretical and practical courses that cover topics such as computer programming, advanced mathematics, and project management. The vast majority of computer science internships are managed through the colleges and universities.
In order to gain acceptance into a computer science internship program, there are specific application criteria that must be met. Candidates must have successfully completed high school courses in calculus, algebra, statistics, computer programming, technology, and English. The number of applicants for computer science programs is quite high, as this field is forecast to have a higher than average growth in the next five to seven years.
When selecting a school for a computer science training program, it is important to review three main items: reputation, breadth of program offerings, and internship opportunities. A school with an excellent reputation has dedicated significant money, time, and resources to the program over a period of years. Look at the qualifications of the instructors, their areas of expertise and research. Review recent publications to learn more about their philosophies and approach, and read the school website for detailed biographies.
Computer science internships and cooperative job placement opportunities are critical to gaining valuable experience. Review the breadth of internship opportunities available from the computer science school. Look for schools that have internships in different sectors or industries, ranging from software companies to large, multinational corporations. The broader your experience, the more job opportunities become available to you.
To qualify for computer science internships, candidates must meet the academic requirements specific to each placement. The best internship opportunities often require additional experience, personal essay, or interview. Research the employer and incorporate specific skills or knowledge that are relevant to its practice into your essay or interview.
On occasion, internship positions are posted on job boards. These opportunities are rare, and are most common in locations where there is a critical shortage of computer science graduates. The qualifications for these types of positions typically include some formal education at the post-secondary level in computers, programming, or system analysis.
Volunteer organizations and opportunities are other places to look for computer science internship positions. These positions are available with little to no pay and are used to gain valuable work experience. Many programs of this kind are organized by government agencies to help recent immigrants gain North American work experience.