First PAID Internship. How I got it?

Aditya Thakur
3 min readJul 20, 2021

After my first internship ended, I had become accustomed to the startup culture. The fact that people were collaborating virtually, working on ideas, and building real-world solutions was fascinating. With Flutter, I could build apps over the weekend, back them with Firebase and test out ideas at no cost and iterate on them.

I was having a really great time, participating in Hackathons, delivering sessions, and connecting with so many people on LinkedIn. I wasn’t actively looking for a job/internship instead was focussing on upskilling myself. It is then, I was introduced by one of my fellow Campus Mantris at GeeksforGeeks to my future recruiter. Who for this article, I shall call ‘Electro’ because not many people are named that (which sucks) and also to save his identity.

Electro was working on this app to help people connect virtually. He reached out to me with a doubt he had in Flutter. I try to help with whatever I can. If I do not particularly know the solution, I often provide a rough roadmap of how I’d approach it. Because we as devs while debugging sometimes know the solution in our heads but lack that direction. No wonder we have all those, ‘This was such a stupid mistake’ moments while writing code.

Electro and I connected then. After a few weeks, I saw him post about openings at his startup. I wasn’t looking to get hired. A few days later he dmmed asking if I’d be interested in working at his company. I am always open to ideas and asked him if he would tell me what he was working on. This is a common question I put forth to any startup founder. Ideas are good, but I trust founders who put more stress on execution. Also, I like to work only if I believe in the idea.

He was happy to tell me about the idea and connected me with the CEO. He himself was the Technical Officer. Having a good profile and recommendation from the CTO to back me up, I was ready to negotiate a salary. Duh, I wasn’t going to do it for free! The first offer they made was above my expectations. Instead of being directly employed, I also signed a consultancy agreement, which meant I could work my own hours and take a break.

The offer was good. I also got to learn a new technology integration with Flutter and a lot about project management. The monthly paycheck was an additional plus to look forward to. This brings me to a most often put forth question:

How to get a paid Internship?

and, this is often how I break it down:

First, build a profile. Put up projects you’ve done, share your learnings on a platform like LinkedIn. Clean and ‘pretty’ your GitHub profile. And, please please update your Resume.

Second, Network. Identify your recruiters and network with them. If you’re a student developer, startups might be a good start. Identify these companies, go to their ‘people’ tab on LinkedIn, and connect with them. You can wait for an opening or dm the founder telling him why you might be a good fit for the role. Most startup founders are always open to recruiting great talent.

Third, Apply. If you’ve been doing the above two steps right, you’ll have offers sent to your inbox. But, if that doesn’t happen you can always apply. You have a strong profile and a great network to back you up. There are job openings posted to WhatsApp/Telegram groups that might be good, Angel. co is a great website and there are other platforms that you can check out to get your next Internship.

How to get Internships/Projects as a Developer?

I post opportunities in Flutter development and other technologies that I come across on the #job-internship-opportunities channel on my Discord Server.

Join in using the link here, and network with other students in tech!

Thank you so much for reading :)