5 Practical Ways to Find Graphic Design Internships
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 6 min read


  1. Network at Design Conferences and Events
  2. Leverage Social Media Platforms
  3. Utilize Online Job Boards and Forums
  4. Reach Out to Companies Directly
  5. Join Graphic Design Organizations and Clubs

As an aspiring graphic designer, finding an internship can feel like a daunting task. But don't fret—there are many practical ways to land that dream internship. In this blog, we'll explore five practical ways on how to find graphic design internships, breaking down each method with easy, relatable advice. So, whether you're a student, recent graduate, or a self-taught designer, this guide is for you.

Network at Design Conferences and Events

One of the best ways to find graphic design internships is to get out there and network. Design conferences and events are great places to meet industry professionals and gain insights into the job market. Here's how you can make the most of it:

Attend Industry Specific Events

Make sure you're attending events that cater specifically to graphic design. These could be workshops, trade shows, or even online webinars. Events like Adobe MAX, The Dieline Conference, or the HOW Design Live are some of the popular ones in this field. They not only offer learning experiences but also provide opportunities to connect with professionals who might be looking for interns.

Prepare Your Elevator Pitch

When you're at these events, you're likely to meet potential employers. So, it's important to be able to introduce yourself and your work quickly and effectively. This is where an elevator pitch comes in handy. Keep it short, simple, and engaging. Talk about who you are, what you do, and what you're looking for—in this case, how you're on the hunt for graphic design internships.

Carry Your Portfolio

Having a portfolio on hand—whether it's printed or digital—can make a big difference. It allows you to showcase your work and demonstrate your skills. Remember to include your best pieces that reflect your style and versatility. Trust me, nothing says, "I'm ready for an internship" quite like a well-prepared portfolio.

Follow Up After the Event

Once the event is over, don’t forget to follow up with the people you’ve met. You can send them a simple email or connect with them on LinkedIn. This helps to keep the conversation going and might open doors to internship opportunities. Just remember, networking is about building relationships, and that takes time and effort.

So, next time you're wondering how to find graphic design internships, consider attending a design event. It might just lead you to the perfect opportunity.

Leverage Social Media Platforms

Moving on, let's talk about the power of social media. In today's digital age, platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram can be incredibly useful in your search for graphic design internships. Here's how you can use them to your advantage:

LinkedIn: The Professional Network

LinkedIn is a fantastic platform for professional networking. Start by making sure your profile is up-to-date and reflects your skills and experience in graphic design. Use the job search feature to find internships—just type "graphic design internships" in the search bar and see what comes up. Don't forget to join graphic design groups on LinkedIn to connect with like-minded individuals and potential employers.

Twitter: The Conversation Starter

Twitter can be surprisingly effective when it comes to job hunting. Follow companies you're interested in and engage with their posts. You can also use hashtags like #GraphicDesignInternships to find opportunities. Just remember, Twitter is all about conversation—so don't be afraid to start one.

Instagram: The Portfolio Showcase

For graphic designers, Instagram can act as a digital portfolio. By consistently posting your work, you can attract the attention of potential employers. Follow design influencers and companies, engage with their content, and don't hesitate to reach out with a friendly DM. You never know, your next internship could be a post away!

So, remember, when it comes to finding graphic design internships, social media can be your best friend. Use these platforms wisely, and you'll be one step closer to landing that dream internship.

Utilize Online Job Boards and Forums

Let's now move onto another vast resource at your disposal—online job boards and forums. These platforms can be a gold mine when it comes to finding graphic design internships. Here's how you can make the most of them:

Job Boards: The Direct Approach

Online job boards such as Indeed, Glassdoor, and Behance are treasure troves for internship opportunities. Simply search "graphic design internships," and you'll be presented with a list of available positions. Make sure your resume is ready to upload and tailor your application letter to each opportunity.

Forums: The Community Resource

Forums like Reddit and Quora can also be surprisingly helpful. Look for threads discussing graphic design internships, and don't hesitate to ask your own questions. The online community can be a valuable source of advice and leads to potential opportunities. Remember, every comment or reply could be a pathway to an internship!

So, by effectively utilizing online job boards and forums, you can significantly enhance your chances of securing a graphic design internship. Remember, these platforms are more than just databases—they're communities, so don't be shy to engage!

Reach Out to Companies Directly

Another practical way to find graphic design internships is by reaching out directly to the companies you're interested in. This approach might seem a bit daring, but hey, fortune favors the bold, right? So let's explore how you can do this.

Research Your Favorite Companies

Start by putting together a list of companies whose work you admire. It could be a giant like Adobe, or a smaller agency with a portfolio that speaks to you. It's all about finding a place where you believe your creativity can flourish.

Find the Right Contacts

Once you have your list, it's time to find the right people to contact. LinkedIn can be a great resource for this. Look for individuals in managerial or HR roles within your chosen companies. Remember, it's all about getting your application in front of the right eyes.

Send Out Personalized Emails

Now, it's time to compose your emails. Make sure to personalize each one—nothing screams 'generic' like a copy-pasted message. Explain why you're interested in their company and how you think you could contribute as an intern. Attach your portfolio or a link to your online work, and remember to thank them for their time.

Reaching out directly to companies can require a bit more effort, but it can also show initiative and drive, qualities that are highly valued in the graphic design world. Remember, you won't know if you don't try!

Join Graphic Design Organizations and Clubs

One often overlooked way to find graphic design internships is by joining graphic design organizations and clubs. These networks can provide a goldmine of opportunities, not to mention invaluable experience and learning opportunities. Let's explore this a little more.

Why Join a Design Organization?

Firstly, being part of a design organization or club can give you access to exclusive job postings which are not publicly advertised. Organizations often have partnerships with companies which specifically look to recruit their members. In addition, you get the opportunity to mingle with like-minded individuals who share your passion for design. Who knows, your next internship opportunity could come from a conversation at a club meeting!

How to Choose the Right Organization

There is a myriad of design organizations out there. Some are broad, covering all aspects of design, while others focus on specific niches within the field. Do some research to find one that aligns with your interests. For example, the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) is a popular choice for many aspiring designers.

Making the Most of Your Membership

Once you join an organization, make sure you actively participate. Attend meetings, workshops, and networking events. Remember, the goal is to learn, make connections, and find internships. So, don't be shy — share your ideas, ask questions, and let people know you're looking for opportunities.

Joining a graphic design organization or club can be a game-changer in your quest to find a graphic design internship. It expands your network, helps you learn from others, and opens doors to opportunities that you might not have found elsewhere.

If you're eager to find the perfect graphic design internship, check out Karen Oldhoven's workshop, 'Create Your Brand Inside & Out.' This workshop will not only help you understand the importance of personal branding but also provide you with practical tips to make your portfolio stand out to potential employers. Join the workshop and get one step closer to landing your dream graphic design internship!