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Intern Diaries: Why They’re Not Calling You Back.

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

Hi, my name is Jennie Fetzer and I am a senior at The University of Connecticut. I’m super passionate about the media industry, and I hope to work for a magazine post-grad. I would consider myself outgoing, enthusiastic, and detail-oriented. In my free time, I like to find cute brunch spots, read my horoscope on a beach, and dwell over the fact that 99% of the internships I have applied to in my four years of college never called me back. Insert- *imposter syndrome here*

Now that you have some background on me, and an insight into my deepest darkest thoughts, let’s start from the beginning. In sixth grade, I decided my career path was journalism. And so I created an email account, (hi, jenndoglover13@yahoo.com), and followed the instructions inside Seventeen Magazine on how to apply for their summer shadowship. For obvious reasons, I never got a call back. This is where the rejections started. 

If you search “Resume” on my computer, “Jennie Fetzer; Resume-157” will appear. Yes, I have made 157 versions of my resume in my life. Which can probably be translated into the fact that I have applied to 157 jobs. And you know how many I’ve had? Three. By now you probably can see where this is going. 

The job market is grueling these days. Especially if you want to work in fashion, media, journalism, or any type of communications. Anyone with an iPhone and a social media presence thinks they’re a professional- so how do we stand out?

I’m no expert, but my best kept secret is, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Here are a few tips for using that statement to your advantage:


Make. One. And get to 500+. I don’t care if you only know 150 of those people. Add contacts from every company you want to work at, and make it a point to interact with them. Which brings me to my next tip…

Slide Into their DM’s

No, not like that creepy frat boy on Instagram. Like the professional queen (or king, or non-binary) that you are. My favorite thing to do is search a company, then put in my school as a criteria for their profile. This will automatically give you alumni from your college, increasing the chances they’ll want to help you out. A great sample message I would send is:

​Hi *their name*! My name is *your name* and I am a *school year* at *school*. I see you also attended school here, go *mascot*! I have a lot of interest in working at *their company*, and I was wondering if we could connect to talk about your experience?! 

​​If they say yes, great, suggest a virtual coffee date! Video calling strangers is more normal than ever before. So use that to your advantage! In the conversation, be sure to mention that you’re applying, or are planning to apply, to their company, and ask if you can use them as a reference. Chances are they’ll say yes! 

Stay In Touch

Be sure to check in with all your contacts regularly so they remember who you are. If applicable, follow them on social media to stay in-the-know about their life. And definitely add them on LinkedIn. Then whenever you post a cool, and slight bragging life update, they can see all your accomplishments.

The reality is, they’re probably not calling you back for that position because they don’t know who you are. So make yourself known, and next time you might just get a response.


Jennie is a senior at The University of Connecticut studying communications, a previous intern for Her Campus Nationals, and the editor-in-chief of Her Campus UConn! You can find her on instagram @jennie.fetzer, or in the decor section of TJMaxx buying candles.