Finding Internship and Co-op Opportunities


Remember: A wise first step in this process is to attend an information session on finding internships. During the school year, workshops are offered weekly in Goodell Rm 508.  See our events calendar.


UMass Amherst Handshake

Beginning July 1st, as a student at UMass Amherst you have access to our UMass Amherst Handshake database.  Handshake is your starting point, allowing you to search nationwide for co-ops, internships, and (when the time comes) jobs. Log in with your SPIRE NetID and SPIRE password.  You can create and save searches specific to your needs or use the quick search buttons for internships and co-ops in general.

How to Search for Opportunities on Handshake

  1. Go to the Jobs and Internships tab, and select Search.
  2. Choose the opportunity type first. The opportunities in our database are listed as Internships (including co-ops), and Jobs (permanent, part time or full time, often requiring a degree).
  3. Do not be too specific. Initially, do not indicate any keywords. Instead, search only by desired major and city and state.
  4. Browse the listings by clicking on Search.
  5. Then go back and customize your search with key words or specific industries if need be.


Helpful Tips for Searching Handshake

  • Don't delay. Many field experience positions are set up a full semester in advance.  To do an internship in the second half of your sophomore year, you should be searching for (and applying to) internships during the first half of your sophomore year or even the previous summer.  Many students do their field experience work in the spring of their sophomore year, the summer after their sophomore year, during their junior year, the summer after their junior year and even during their senior year.
  • Think broadly about the types of positions you are seeking. If you are interested in working in the legal field, do not just look under “law,” but also consider “advocacy,” “conflict resolution,” “criminal justice,” “political organization/lobbying,” and “community service.”
  • Summer placements are often more competitive than regular semester placements. Try to be flexible and plan ahead.
  • International students should check in with the International Programs Office before pursuing a position in the United States to be sure they will be eligible for CTP approval. 
  • All undergraduate students considering an international internship will need to get approval at least six months in advance from the International Programs Office.


Beware of fraudulent job and internship postings!

The job and internship postings on the UMass Amherst Handshake site is a service for businesses and University of Massachusetts Amherst students and alumni. Business owners are responsible for reporting information fairly and accurately, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, its Trustees, Officers, employees, and agents cannot and do not guarantee the completeness or accuracy of such information. Inclusion of any job or internship on this website does not constitute, and shall not be construed or reported as: (1) an endorsement or approval by the University of Massachusetts Amherst, its Trustees, Officers, employees, and agents of the company, or its business practices; or (2) a warranty or representation by the University of Massachusetts Amherst as to the quality, integrity, legitimacy or other features of such company and/or its owners or agent(s).

The University of Massachusetts Amherst, its Trustees, Officers, and employees make no warranties or representations regarding the quality, integrity, legitimacy, safety, suitability or other features of such listings and/or the businesses/companies, and expressly disclaim any and all responsibility for any problems and/or claims that may arise with regard to such listings, or with regard to disputes between users and third party businesses or companies posting on this site concerning such job or internship listings. All students are encouraged to exercise their own good judgment when evaluating a prospective job or internship.

If an offer or posting seems “too good to be true,” be cautious. “False contacts” can masquerade under a legitimate company name.  Watch for misspellings, extra letters, phrases, etc. that are added to emails or website addresses or overzealous “recruiters”.


i.          Never give out any personal or banking information.

ii.         Never agree to deposit a check or money order into your bank account from a company to start the work.

iii.        Never agree to send money to another individual.

iv.        Legitimate company contacts will never ask you do any of these things.


If an employer asks you to do any of the above, stop all contact and please contact UMass Career Services immediately at 413-545-2224, and forward any suspicious emails to


Other Internship Websites

Additional field experience opportunities can be found here:
Broadcast Internships
The Carter Center
Google  Enter city and "internships” e.g. “Los Angeles internships”.
Idealist  Nonprofits.
Intern Hub
Internship Programs
LinkedIn Internships
Monster College
National Archives and Records Administration
National Council on Public History
Nonprofit Career Network
Smart Intern China Opportunities in China.
Smithsonian  Over 235 departments offer 600 internships per year.


For a comprehensive list of our favorite sites, download our
Career Services List of Websites for Internship Seekers (PDF)

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And don't forget about the importance of a research assistantship if you are in one of the sciences!  Visit the Office of Undergraduate Research & Studies (OURS) in the Learning Resource Center in the W.E.B. Dubois Library on campus.