Lesson Weekend

Below is a general explanation and walkthrough of the internship process. Exact dates and deadlines will differ for each course. You will be provided all dates and deadlines specific to your cohort as internships near. Not every class is the same, but you should expect to complete the general steps listed below.

Preparation and Practice

The following will take place before interacting with internship companies, to help you best prepare.


Preparation Day for Cover Letters, LinkedIn, etc.

You will have a day of in-class time dedicated to preparing your LinkedIn profile, writing a cover letter, cleaning up your GitHub portfolio, and practicing interview questions. This will occur before you are required to send these documents to companies.

You can view the coursework for this day in the Internship and Job Search section of this site, and the schedule for the day in the LinkedIn, Mock Interviews, and Cover Letters lesson.

Cover Letter and LinkedIn Check-In

After completing the in-class day detailed above, you will be assigned a time check in with a member of Epicodus' staff regarding your cover letter and LinkedIn profile. They'll review them with you, provide feedback, and you'll have an opportunity to ask questions. This evaluation will be treated just like a code review, with feedback submitted through Epicenter.

This will occur before you are required to send cover letters to internship companies, allowing you time to make any suggested revisions.

Resume

You will develop a resume geared towards applying for tech industry jobs. Your resume will also be reviewed by an Epicodus staff member and treated the same as a code review, with feedback submitted through Epicenter.

Mock Interview

Before your internship interviews you'll undergo a preparatory mock interview with a staff member. This will include both technical and non-technical questions, and will be a great opportunity to sharpen your interview skills before your internship interviews with actual companies.

Your interviewer will evaluate your interview and provide feedback through Epicenter just like a code review.

  • An overview of the mock interview process, including sample non-technical questions, and the objectives you will be evaluated upon is available here.
  • An overview of the technical portion of the mock interview, including sample technical questions is available here.
  • Additional tips and resources are available in the Preparing for Job Interviews section of this site.

Again, your specific scheduled mock interview time will be provided to you in advance.

Internship Agreement

You will be emailed an Internship Agreement document outlining the requirements and expectations of the Internship class, and asked to sign electronically. You can preview a sample agreement here.

Internship Matchmaking Process

The following section details how students and internship companies are matched, including everything you must do before being assigned an internship.


Considerations

First off, keep the following considerations about the internship matchmaking process in mind:

  • Companies will drop out / jump in outside of our schedule: It's simply the nature of the tech industry. Companies sometimes encounter unexpected speed bumps or surprise projects, and it doesn't always happen on exactly our time line. This is to be expected; it's entirely normal, and happens every time.

  • Companies reschedule interviews sometimes: Again, just the nature of the tech industry. Especially given the number of startups we work with. Your interviewer is likely wearing many hats, and responsible for many different roles in the company; things come up! Do not be surprised or alarmed if there's a last-minute reschedule. This really is completely normal. Be flexible, we'll work with the company to reschedule and make it work!

  • Rankings are a two-way street: Companies have just as much say as students in where everyone is placed. You may not receive your top choice. But know that's totally okay. We don't have a great deal of discretion in matchmaking to begin with, but we do take a lot of time and care ensuring students receive internships as high on their preference list as possible.

Essentially be flexible!

Internship Companies

Internship companies will be posted on Epicenter in the weeks leading up to internships. You will be notified when all companies are available, and will then have several days to rank these companies based on your interest.

Each of these companies has agreed to offer students 30+ hours per week of development experience, and 30+ hours per week of a professional developer available to you as a mentor. You can view a sample of the Internship Agreement each company signs here.

Take the time read each internship description carefully, research each company, and make informed decisions about where you'd like to interview!

Ranking Process

After all internships have been posted you'll be provided a deadline to rank all companies by. Rankings are submitted through Epicenter. Below are instructions for the ranking process:

  • Drag and drop the companies on the internship page from first to last choice. Leave companies that are not taking interns from your language at the bottom.
  • Only rank companies taking interns from your class.
  • Internships in your city (and its immediate surroundings) can be assumed to be in-person internships, unless stated otherwise.
  • Internships with locations not in your city (or its immediate surroundings) can be assumed to be remote, unless stated otherwise.
  • Include additional written feedback only if one of the following reasons prevent you from working at a potential internship, and we'll make the necessary accommodations:
    • You are unable to work a remote internship (Usually because you don't have regular access to a computer to work remotely from).
    • You are unable to travel to the location of an in-person internship.

Interview Assignments

After students have submitted rankings each will be assigned roughly 3-5 companies to interview with. If you followed all directions above, at least two should be companies you ranked highly!

Sending Cover Letters & Other Information

Along with interview assignments you'll also be provided contact information for interviewers. You'll send the following to each, in the format described, by the deadline provided:

  • Cover Letter: Placed in the body of the email and attached as a .PDF.
  • LinkedIn Profile: Include a link in the contact information section of your cover letter.
  • Github Profile: Include a link in the contact information section of your cover letter.
  • Transcript: Attached to the email as a .PDF file. (The transcript includes your attendance record.)
  • Resume: Attached to the email as a .PDF file.

Creating PDF File for Transcript (Including Attendance Records)

You can create a PDF document of your transcript, which includes your attendance record, by clicking view transcript from your profile on Epicenter. Select "print" and, instead of sending the document to a printer, change the option to "save as" (or "print to" on some machines) a PDF document.

Scheduling Interviews

After this, interviews will take place. Epicodus will schedule interviews for you with reasonable travel time between each. You will be provided your schedule in advance of your interviews.

Attending Interviews

You must attend all interviews at the time specified by your schedule, even with companies that may not be your first choice. If you fail to attend an interview without explicit permission from Epicodus you risk being withdrawn from the program. Contact us immediately if an unplanned emergency prevents you from attending an interview.

  • For in-person internships, interviews will take place at the company (unless stated otherwise). The address of each company is available on Epicenter.
  • For remote internships, interviews will take place via Skype or Google Hangouts (unless stated otherwise).

Follow-up

After completing interviews we highly recommend sending a brief follow-up email to each interviewer thanking them for their time.

Re-Ranking

An Epicodus internship coordinator will then contact you and request you re-rank each company you've interviewed with. (In the format of "first choice", "second choice", "third choice", etc.) We may also ask you for feedback on your interview experience in general.

Also, keep in mind that after interviewing, students often find internships they previously ranked lower are actually the internship they're most excited about. Keep an open mind throughout this process!

Internship Assignments

After all interviews have taken place, we'll compile both company feedback and student rankings and attempt to match all students with the best possible internship. Once completed, you and your classmates will find your internship assignment in Epicenter. Congratulations!

Preparatory Work

Internship mentors may ask you to complete preparation work before your start date. This could include anything from signing up for accounts on websites they use, to learning about a technology you didn't study at Epicodus. But don't be alarmed if they don't reach out with preparatory work, either! Some companies prefer to do this on your first day, whereas others like to prepare ahead of time. Both are totally normal!

There are generally two weeks of preparation time between the end of your Level 3 course and the beginning of your internship course. Regular attendance at Epicodus is not required during this period, but you're encouraged and welcome to continue using our space and spend your time working on any preparatory tasks from your internship, and/or the Capstone project you'll present to employer's at Demo Day.

Working at Internships

This section details what will occur during your Internship course, including the correspondence we'll maintain with you.


Schedule and Start Date

By the date specified for your cohort, you will begin the 5-week internship course. Different companies may have different work weeks or hours. Specific schedule information will be provided by your host company. Treat this as a job. That means you're expected to attend each workday of the 5-week period. If illness or unplanned circumstances prevents you from attending a day, call or email your supervisor with as much notice as possible, as you'd be expected to do at any job.

Feedback & Grades

We'll check in with both you and your internship company weekly to gather feedback, and ensure everything is going well.

Feedback from You

Each week we'll ask you to provide feedback on your internship experience. This usually includes the following questions:

  • Did you have at least 30 hours per week of programming or programming-related work?
  • Was there an experienced programmer available to you for at least 30 hours per week as a mentor?
  • What is going well at your internship?
  • What could make it better?

If the answer to either of the first two questions is "no", we will immediately contact you and attempt to remedy the situation.

Feedback from Companies

Each week we'll also ask your host company to provide feedback on the internship experience for them. This usually includes the following questions:

  • Did your intern(s) arrive on time every day? If not, what days did they miss?
  • Did they meet performance expectations?
  • What is going well?
  • What could go better next week?

Responses to the first two questions will be recorded and used to calculate a grade for your internship course. This grade will appear on your transcript. The second two responses are simply to work toward continually improving the internship experience.

Compensation

The internship is an academic course taken through Epicodus as part of your program. As such, you should not expect your host company to pay you. (Hosts always have the option to do so, but this is decided entirely by them.) Epicodus intentionally collects absolutely no information regarding whether a host company plans to pay interns. This guarantees that potential compensation plays absolutely zero part in the internship matchmaking process.

Resolving Conflicts

If anything at your internship isn't going right, you don't have to wait until we reach out for feedback. Let us know immediately! The sooner we know about any issues, the sooner we can work with you and your host company to resolve them.

Internship Extensions

Occasionally companies offer students internship extensions. The first 5 weeks of the internship are required to complete your Epicodus Internship course, as detailed in the Internship Agreement. Any extension beyond these 5 weeks is entirely your choice. It is up to you and your host company to agree on terms and compensation.

If you're offered an extension, and are considering taking it, we strongly encourage you to contact our career support staff to assist in negotiating a fair agreement!