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Getting Your Intern Application to Stand Out

Sure, you can add your resume to the pile. But how to get it to stand out? (CQ Roll Call File Photo).

Job applications can be stressful, even for the “junior interns.” So how do you go about navigating the confusing world of the intern application process? Hill Navigator discusses.

I am a high school senior about to enter college. During college I hope to intern on Capitol Hill. I will be working at a law office full time this summer, I plan [to] double major in Communications and Political Science, and I was a junior intern on my congressman's 2014 campaign. (I didn't apply to be an intern, but I volunteered at the office two hours every week, and the staff there considered and called me an intern.) What else should I do to make my internship application stand out?
Aim high, young and ambitious intern. And you’re already starting on a great track! (Hill Navigator is especially impressed that you’re reading Roll Call before having set foot on Capitol Hill.)  

“Junior intern” is a fairly uncommon moniker, but it bodes well for an ambitious campaign volunteer who wants to secure a Capitol Hill internship in college. Most internships are reserved for college students or recent college graduates, so you’re wise to start thinking now about your application and résumé and how to land one.  

The best place to start is with your local congressman or senator’s office. You can begin with your hometown, or the member who represents your college town. Even more important than the bullets on your résumé is understanding the application process. Begin by calling their offices, introducing yourself and asking when they take internship applications and what is required. Some offices have rolling applications, others have a set schedule and can be strict about deadlines.  

Most internships do not require much in the way of previous work experience. For many, interning is the first foray into the professional world. But you can use your campaign experience to show you’re capable of hard work and have a good idea of what you want to do. You can also solicit your former campaign team as potential references, and they may be willing to contact the member’s office on your behalf.  

Finally, once you do get in the door, put those hard-working skills to good use. Take a look at our e-Book, Roll Call’s Guide to Acing Your Internship . Good luck! (And thanks for reading!)  

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