An internship is a work experience related to the career you are planning to pursue. Internships in CS may be the most highly paid and frequently available internships at Boise State. While time and duration varies, many interns work ~15hrs/week while in school allowing adequate time for studies and then full time during breaks. Beyond the financial security, internships provide experiential learning that allows student to employ concepts and theories in the real world. Interns have an increased opportunity to network in the professional community and get a good feeling for the culture and workplace at different companies. Additionally, you may or may not choose to receive general elective academic credit for them. When it comes to finding a place of employment after graduation, completing internships is one of the most important things you can do!
Finding Internships and Jobs
A survey from a few years ago found that by their Junior year, 80% of Boise State CS students had secured internships. For the class of 2016, 95% of graduates that didn’t go to graduate school were employed upon graduating. Of those students, 96% were employed locally. Boise State CS is clearly the partner of choice for companies in their research and recruiting efforts! Here’s how to find out more about these opportunities?
“I’ve been involved in hiring for over 7 years and one thing stands out as an indicator of how well a recent college grad will do in an interview: Have they had a meaningful internship? This is a better predictor of how a student will do in our interview process than the school they are attending or their GPA. Nothing will better prepare you for your first “real” job than a meaningful internship, where you contribute alongside everyone else. You learn a LOT, have a lot of fun doing it, and the best part is you get paid!” – James Price, Head of Development, Clearwater Analytics
CSStudents Google Group
We forward many internship and full time job opportunities to enrolled CS majors via our CSStudents google group
to their u.boisestate.edu email addresses. If you do not check this email account regularly, we encourage you to set up forwarding so you don’t miss these or other important announcements from the CS department.
Many companies are recruiting for more than just CS students. These companies tend to use the three annual Boise State career fairs to make those connections. The Boise State Career Center
holds a fair in the spring and fall while the College of Engineering
holds an engineering specific fair in the fall.
Research Local Tech Companies
Research and identify local tech companies on your own. Send them your resume along with a cover letter identifying why you’d be interested in being an intern for them. You can find a great list of local software companies using the Boise Software Ecosystem map
below (maintained by Dr. Amit Jain). With software eating the world
however, almost every company needs computer science talent.
Attending weekly CS Seminars
(Fridays at Noon in CCP 221) and the PhD in Computing Colloquium Series
are good opportunities to hear about in depth topics on computer science from industry members. These events, the CS Seminars specifically, are a coveted opportunity for local companies to come present in depth topics on computer science related to the projects they’re working on, hopefully interesting you further in coming to work with them. Seminars are advertised to the CSStudents email but you can visit the linked pages shortly after the semester begins for complete schedules.
Taking advantage of the following resources and events can provide you with great development and networking opportunities, helping you land internships and jobs.
Meetups: There are a number of local meetup groups, some of which meet regularly in our building. Check out www.meetup.com to find local groups focused on web development, SQL server, cloud computing, agile development, front end development and bitcoin. Browse all events categorized as Tech to find more information about them.
Conferences: The local tech community is fortunate to have the largest code camp in the Northwest, Boise Code Camp, and other conferences to use for professional development and networking. Check out Boise Code Camp (March), Hackfort (March), develop.idaho (September) and Boise Startup Week (October). These opportunities and others are usually shared using the CS Student group. For events that have registration fees, student discounts often exist.
The Idaho Tech Slack: Created by the Senior VP of Product & Engineering at Tsheets (part of Intuit), this community of 500+ uses Slack as a tool to engage each other with opportunities for collaboration, learning and yes, jobs (join the Jobs channel).
While browsing the internship opportunities, you’re only seeing postings from companies recruiting at that exact time, so be sure to check Handshake
regularly for what’s new.
The CS department offers a number of different employment opportunities to students:
Do you enjoy helping others? Are there certain classes that you really enjoyed? Would you like work experience that looks good on a resume or college application? If so, being a Lab Assistant may be for you! Lab Assistants provide individual and small group tutoring to students in the CS Tutoring Centers and assist students in improving academic achievement by clarifying learning problems and working on study skills. This is a supplement to classroom teaching and Lab Assistants are not expected to know everything about the subject for which they assist. Prior to each semester an email will be sent to the CS Student google group advertising any Lab Assistant opportunities. You can also email email@example.com if you’d like to express your interest at any time and learn more about this opportunity.
Depending on course enrollments, in high capacity courses a grader may be needed to help the instructor manage the course. These opportunities are advertised on a case by case basis to the CS Students google group.
Undergraduate Research Assistants
Undergraduate research is a fantastic opportunity to dive deeper into computer science. It’s also a great way to determine if graduate studies may be of interest to you. Funding for undergraduate research positions can vary but interested students should reach out to faculty in research areas of interest to see if there are such opportunities. Some of these positions may also be advertised via the CS Students google group.
If you’ve completed your FAFSA, you may find you have qualified for work study. While some work study positions in the department are advertised via the CS Student google group, it’s encouraged that if you have work study you approach faculty directly that are engaged in research of interest to you to see if there’s mutual interest in being involved in that work. Your work study award can be used to fund these undergraduate research opportunities! The department does run a report each semester of work study awardees so you may be contacted regarding Lab Assistant or Undergraduate Research Assistant opportunities.