How I Got My EHS Internship
By Sarah H.
Over winter break, my mom asked me how my search was going for a summer internship. I half nervously told her I had not yet begun looking and then received a look of disappointment. Going into my search for a summer internship I knew I wanted two things: one, I wanted to live at home (in Los Angeles), and two I wanted my internship to be Environmental Health related. When I began to look this was hard because most University of Washington internship programs were Seattle-based, and the internships I found outside of Seattle seemed to be PR or marketing-related. I became anxious because I did not think I was going to be able to find anything. I thought this until I came across Beautycounter on Indeed.com (a job searching website). The job posting said this was an Environmental Health and Safety internship located in Santa Monica, which hit both my goals. When I found this opportunity, I told my friend how I was applying at a makeup company I had never heard of. My friend told me that she knew a consultant who worked for that company, and she gave me her number. I next texted the girl asking about the company, and she gave me her manager’s email. I emailed the consultant’s manager, who gave me the email of the director in charge of hiring. I next emailed the director with a letter informing him of my interest. I also included my resume in the email. After a few emails, I was offered an over the phone interview with the woman in charge of the Environmental Health and Safety DepartmentThe phone interview went smoothly. I told her what my major was, where I grew up, and about my Environmental Health major at UW. It was a very casual conversation, but I was also well prepared and had questions to ask her about the company to show interest. After this phone call, I emailed her thanking her for her time, and received a note from Travis’s assistant saying that the woman was very impressed with me. I was told I would hear back in a week. After only a couple of days, I received a phone call that I got the internship! I was ecstatic!
What I learned from this experience is the importance of networking. It was luck that I found the consultant, but because of her, I was able to email the director and stand out compared to someone who did not have that connection. Also, I learned the importance of following up and being professional. When I finished the phone interview, I made sure to email the interviewer, the director, and his assistant, to thank them all independently for their help and consideration. These extra steps are something that I will continue to use whenever applying for internships or jobs in the future.