What is the general application process for CIPE-coordinated internships?
- Students submit resumes, cover letters, and any additional supporting documents to Symplicity, starting in mid-January.
- All students are required to have attended a Resume/Cover Letter workshop offered by CIPE. The next workshop will be offered in early January 2017, and past attendance in 2015/16 fulfills this pre-requisite.
- We recommend working with your CIPE advisor to ensure that your application materials are strong. A strong application* is one in which your skills and talents connect with the job description.
- CIPE will forward all qualified applications* to the internship organization. After reviewing the student’s application, the organization will contact the student directly if they wish to offer an interview.
- Students can typically expect to hear from the partner organization within 3-6 weeks after application materials have been submitted. This wide range in timelines is due to the different internal processes of each organization.
- Students who successfully interview and receive offers will have about 5 business days to accept or decline the offer. Students who are not selected are encouraged to request feedback from CIPE on how they can strengthen their candidacy for future applications, and to review their alternative options with their CIPE advisor.
What are the advantages of applying through CIPE for internships?
Many organizations have very competitive internship selection processes, and may receive over 100 resumes from students of both local and overseas universities. These are usually seen by a single university recruiter, who usually takes just 20-30 seconds to skim through each resume – this means a high possibility of good candidates being crowded out. To circumvent this, CIPE works with our partners to secure interview opportunities for students recommended by CIPE. This offers a more direct route for students to the interview stage, even if the organization may still sometimes choose not to proceed with an interview.
The close relationship that CIPE manages with our partners also helps us prepare students to put their best foot forward when customizing their application materials and interviewing with the organization. At the same time, these partnerships imply that CIPE has to consider multiple factors, including students’ growth and partners’ needs when managing the process.
When does an internship usually take place? Are students able to do internships during the school year?
Currently, CIPE only offers internships during the break from May to July. A period of 8-12 weeks over the summer would better allow student interns to have a more meaningful learning experience; employers would also be able to adequately train interns and assign them meaningful projects.
What is the application timeline for CIPE internships?
Internship details and application deadlines will be posted on the CIPE website on a rolling basis starting in early January. Corresponding rolling deadlines would usually be 3-4 weeks after the details are published. We expect to keep posting internship descriptions until as late as mid-April.
How long will it take to receive a decision about my internship application?
We expect that decisions will be made available any time from 3-8 weeks after each rolling application deadline. This wide range in timelines is due to the different internal processes of each organization. All applicants will eventually be notified about the result of their application.
How will students be selected for internships? What is the general application process for internships?
Internship applicants will have to submit a resume and cover letter and may have to go through up to 3 rounds of interviews with the partner organisation. We recommend working with your CIPE advisor to ensure that your application materials are strong. A strong application is one in which your skills and talents connect with the job description. While CIPE may in many cases be asked to give our recommendations, the final decision to hire a student intern will be made by the partner organisation.
Can I apply to more than one internship opportunity, and would this decrease my chances of being selected for any one of them?
You are welcome to apply to any number of internships you like, but once you accept an internship offer, you will have to withdraw all your other applications to CIPE opportunities whose timeline would overlap with that of your internship, including language study programmes, summer LABs, research attachments, etc. The number of applications that you submit has no effect on your chance of being selected. However, keep in mind that your applications will likely be stronger if you focus your efforts on a few opportunities rather than try to cast an overly wide net.
Will applicants with previous experience in a particular field have an advantage over applicants with no prior experience (e.g. programming for Google, finance for banks, etc.)?
While the selection committee will take previous experience into account, they will also consider the overall strength of the application, the level of the applicant’s interest and the needs of the partner organisation. There is no guarantee that an experienced applicant will definitely secure a specific internship. In general, at this stage of one’s college career, one’s potential is greater than one’s actual experience of achievements, so while skills can matter in some cases, partners are much more likely to evaluate you on things like interest, opportunity for growth, enthusiasm, maturity, critical thinking and analytical skills, written and oral communications skills, etc.
Will Week 7 LAB selection results impact internship applicants in any way?
No. All internship applications will be considered solely on merit.
Can CIPE help me prepare for my internship application?
Yes, of course! We will hold workshops and provide opportunities for one-on-one practice interview sessions to ensure that you are well prepared when you apply for your internship. Please reference the CIPE Fortnightly Newsletters and our Career Events page
for the latest information on upcoming workshops.
Are CIPE internships paid?
Stipends for CIPE internships will vary depending on the partner organisation. Many NGOs or Public Interest Organisations offer a relatively small stipend. Most of our corporate partners offer stipends. On a case-by-case basis, CIPE will provide some additional financial support to ensure that finances are not a concern in deciding whether a student should apply for a specific opportunity. As a general rule of thumb, please note that internships are primarily meant to be an opportunity for professional and personal learning and development, rather than a revenue-generating opportunity.
Can CIPE provide financial support for an unpaid internship that I secure on my own?
Students who are interested in funding for internships not coordinated through CIPE should apply for Self-Sourced Internship Funding
, a highly competitive program. More information is available on Symplicity.
Where will I live while I am doing my internship?
If you are a Singaporean student doing a Singapore-based internship, we will expect you to live at home. If you are an international student on a Singapore-based internship, you will be able to stay on campus for the duration of your internship (subject to certain conditions) and depending on stipend you are receiving, you may be asked to cover the cost of the housing. If you are going on an overseas internship, CIPE can provide you guidance and resources in securing suitable accommodation there.
When should my internship end?
All CIPE internships should finish in time for students to move-in on their assigned move in day and attend the first day of classes. No CIPE-coordinated internships will result in a late start to classes.
I am very interested in the Mystery Internship. How is it different from other internships in terms of the application and selection process? Is there any difference in terms of the actual work experience?
The mystery continues… We could tell you, but then it wouldn’t be as much of a mystery…
Is Symplicity an internship aggregator or simply a platform for posting Yale-NUS internships?
Both. There are partners that would like CIPE to collate all the applications on their behalf while others will want all applications to be done at their own portals. In the case of the latter, CIPE will still post these in Symplicity for 2 reasons – 1. Create awareness of these internships and 2. Encourage students to seek CIPE’s support review the application materials first before they actually apply.
What has happened to the internship partners announced at the college’s inauguration?
The internship partner relationships established at the start of the college have evolved over time, as many partners have implemented new internal policies or undergone organizational restructuring. We understand that these changes have impacted their original commitments to us, and have hence been building relationshipswith many more leading organisations in Singapore, the region, and the world. CIPE works with students to prepare for the competitive applications process and to navigate complexities involved with recruiting processes.
Is there a difference between a Yale-NUS internship and an NUS internship?
Yale-NUS internship opportunities are cultivated by CIPE after conversations with the employer assessing fit and suitability. Internships publicised by the NUS Centre for Future Ready Graduates (CFG) cater to a much wider spectrum of the student body and are often designated by faculties and/or degree programmes. Students are welcome to apply to internships offered by NUS with CIPE’s support, but will be competing with a much larger pool of students.
Why do some internship applications go through a filtering process by CIPE?
CIPE works with Yale-NUS students to help strengthen application materials for competitive processes. On some occasions, selected employers have requested that CIPE be involved in the selection process. We are moving away from this practice nowadays as in many instances, our application numbers are small enough for our partners to manage their own screening.