Spring on the York College campus

Back to List

Getting to Know Yo(u)rk: How do I find an internship?

March 04, 2024
Handshake on a student's laptop

College can be a confusing place, but it doesn’t have to be. In Getting to Know Yo(u)rk, we speak to members of the York College community to shed light on various aspects of the college experience.

In Summer 2023, York College began partnering with Handshake, a digital platform founded in 2014 that helps college students connect with potential employers. The platform, which currently boasts a usership of over 15 million students, is “committed to democratizing access to opportunity,” according to the company’s mission statement.

Students can access the application through the MyYCP portal and sign in using their York College email address and password. Students who complete their profiles and fill out the “Career Interests” section will have a better chance of standing out to the over 900,000 employers that use Handshake.

Jamie Guilford, Associate Director of Employer Relations at York College, is confident that Handshake will prove a powerful tool for students. “Handshake is the number one system for students to find internships and jobs,” she says. Guilford calls Handshake a “one-stop-shop” to help students with their networking, internships, and job search. “Any student who takes the initiative to start using the system regularly will stay on top of new opportunities and be able to connect with new employers of interest,” she says. “Handshake gives students the power to take control of their own search.”

Ethan Feaser ‘25 was one of the first students to take advantage of those opportunities. Ethan, a Finance major, completed his profile and submitted a résumé to Handshake over the summer, and by September 2023, had landed an internship as a Global Finance and Business Management Summer Analyst at JP Morgan, a Fortune 500 company. “Handshake has been super beneficial for me as a student,” says Ethan. “All I had to do was submit a résumé for review, and once it was approved, I could start job hunting.”

The internship couldn't be more appropriate for Ethan, who hopes to become a financial analyst in the technology sector after college. “Most of the work I will be doing this summer will translate into my own practice as an analyst,” he says. “I would recommend students use Handshake because it is user-friendly, gives you access to great employers, and will help with your career development.”

Being user-friendly is one of the characteristics that separates Handshake from other job platforms. The platform, which students at Michigan Tech University created, was designed specifically with college students in mind and boasts a usability that platforms like LinkedIn lack.

“Employers are moving toward a more skills-based hiring approach, so internships are invaluable in teaching students the skills and giving them the experience that they need to be successful after college,” says Guilford. “Handshake is an outstanding resource to provide these opportunities. It is a really powerful tool.” According to data published by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), students who engage in paid internships are about twice as likely to land a job after graduation compared to non-interns.

The Career Development Center, located in Campbell Hall, will host monthly sessions throughout the semester to educate both faculty and students on the platform. These Handshake Sessions will cover a wide variety of topics, including how to upload documents, how to connect with both employers and other students, and how to use Handshake in concert with LinkedIn, among other things. Information for future Handshake Sessions, career expos, and other on-campus events can be found under the “Events” tab on Handshake, where students can also find information about virtual events hosted by potential employers.

As the roll-out of Handshake continues, the Career Development Office remains open to all students who need help with their job or internship search. “Make an appointment so you can come in and sit down with one of us,” she says. “Your search is not going to look like someone else’s search. Everyone has different goals and needs. We can dig into all of that to make sure you are finding the right opportunities.” Guilford's office can help students prepare résumés, reach out to alumni and employers, and even conduct mock interviews. “You name it, we can help,” she says.

Students seeking internships should attend Career Expo 2024, which will be held on March 13 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Grumbacher Center. Over 100 employers will be there to talk with students regarding part-time, full-time, and internship opportunities. The complete list of employers who will be in attendance is available on the Handshake app.