Creating a DIY Externship

Are you looking for an externship but none of the posted opportunities interest you? Are you interested in learning about what a particular career looks like in real life? Are you interested in creating a Do It Yourself externship that fits your specific interests but don’t know where to begin? Great! Now you can create the perfect opportunity for yourself in 5 easy steps.

1. What do I need to know before I begin?

Step 1, download the DIY Externship Checklist to see what things you need to be thinking about before you start the process. You should be able to check off the first four items before you contact an alum.

2. Find and contact an alum.

Step 2, the CCPD recommends using LinkedIn and the Kalamazoo College Alumni Directory to connect and network with alumni. For assistance with both, please visit Learning from and Connecting with Alumni.

In addition to Linkedin, you may have other ways to connect with alumni. We encourage you to be creative. You might be able to connect with alumni through your sports team, student organizations, professors, or networking events on campus. For help or more suggestions, please schedule an appointment with a Career Coach in Handshake.

3. Create an opportunity with an alum.

Step 3, once you have made a connection with an alum who is willing to host you, be sure to have a detailed and thorough conversation. You can refer back to the DIY Externship checklist, but some of the things you should discuss include:

  • How long will the opportunity be?
  • Will it include a homestay with this alum?
  • If you are not staying with the alumni host, who will you be staying with?
  • What will the objectives and day-to-day functions of the externship include?
  • How will this externship connect with your larger career goals and educational interests?

4. Finalize the details.

Step 4, fill out the DIY Externship Agreement Form and turn it into Richard Sylvester at the CCPD. The agreement form is the final checklist to make sure you have all of your ducks in a row and lets the CCPD know you are applying for a DIY Externship.

5. Fill out the application.

Step 5, complete the online DIY Externship Application.