In order to conduct a strong search for professional experience, you need to know what you're searching for. Understanding personal interests and skills, along with requirements and qualifications for the role and industry of choice takes time to navigate and will be essential to launch a purposeful career.

Here are five initial considerations to frame your search before you get started:

  1. Set clear expectations and goals. Design and revisit your career plan often as you embark on your search. It is essential to identify outcomes and process through the steps to achieve a desired end result.
  2. Organization is key. Stay organized and be methodical by documenting each position you apply to – the role, the company, and timeframe of each interaction in the application process. TIP: Keep all information organized in one place, such as Excel and update regularly.
  3. Timing matters. The search takes time. Carve out time in your daily schedule solely for the search to search opportunities, document next steps, follow-up with company contacts, and further tailor application material.
  4. Quality > Quantity. Quality applications and material will set you apart from other applicants. Tailor your resume for your applications, prepare a customized cover letter, and find contacts to reach out to – whether by connecting with Auburn alumni on LinkedIn or searching for opportunities to connect with recruiters at a career fair or recruitment event.
  5. Actively communicate at each stage of the process. Whether preparing your elevator pitch for an upcoming employer information session or engaging with alumni on LinkedIn, professional, active communication plays a vital role in the search process.



Whether you're applying to co-ops, internships or full-time roles, you can begin with the following steps!

Focus on a particular industry, position, and location. This will help you effectively market yourself to the specific employers you're interested in. Use the following tools to help you identify possible employers. TIP: Focus on no more than 10 - 15 organizations at one time.



Handshake is one of the most valuable resources you have for your internship and job search. It is the primary tool for companies to recruit Auburn students; however, employers from across the nation also have access and can post positions.

Get started:

  1. Complete your profile and make it visible to employers
  2. Search job listings utilizing the filters and search by function, industry, location, and more. Don't simply rely on the keyword search!
  3. Select job and company favorites. When you save a company or job, you'll receive notifications and upcoming deadlines, employers conducting a recruitment event, and more.

Handshake: How to search for jobs

Handshake: Applying for jobs

Career Fairs + Interview Days

Mark your calendar for the College of Engineering Career Fairs and Interview Days as well as other niche Industry Days or fairs found on the Engineering CDCR Calendar. You'll find a list of employers who will be attending each upcoming fair at each event link.

Company Information Sessions + Recruitment Events

Companies often recruit at Auburn by conducting information sessions and other events to meet students and help them learn about their company. Review the Events Calendar in  Handshake regularly to keep track of upcoming employer events.


A complete database of employers, alumni, and jobs/internships for students and recent graduates. Access CareerShift through your Handshake account under Career Center >> Resources.


The Federal Government’s official employment site, connecting job seekers with federal employment opportunities across the United States and around the world.

*Note: Intelligence agencies like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) do not post to USAJOBS.GOV and ask for different information than a federal resume.


A company information database which serves as an excellent source for a location-specific search. Identify employers based on state and city who hire job candidates with your academic major. Select a major in the table below to get started. Once navigating the BuzzFile site, create a free account using your Auburn e-mail address to access the second page of records.

Public Career Web Resources



International Opportunities

Engineering Global Programs

Explore academic and service opportunities through exchange programs, faculty-led programs, and Engineers Without Borders.

Auburn Abroad

Explore opportunities to gain experience abroad through Auburn faculty-led exchange programs as well as faculty-supervised internships.


Provides country guides and a database of internships and jobs. Keep in mind visa and work regulations vary by country and you may not be eligible to work in most countries without obtaining governmental authorization.
Access GoinGlobal through your Handshake account under Career Center >> Resources.

Tools for International Students

International Students and Scholars Services

Many international students have F-1 or J-1 visa status. Dependent upon your status, you may need to meet different on-campus, off-campus, and post-graduation work authorization requirements. Make sure to meet with and stay in touch with International Student Advisors when seeking any form of employment (paid or unpaid) and remain aware of applicable restrictions, requirements, and deadlines. Eligibility requirements for work authorization are dynamic, so please be persistent to stay up to date on any changes.

International Students and Scholars Services
228 Foy Hall


Handshake is the University’s official job search platform for companies to recruit Auburn students. You can sort companies who attend Auburn career fairs or post jobs and internships based on whether or not they are willing to consider international student applicants. The search category used in Handshake is entitled “Work Authorization” and it includes two possible filters:

  • Accepts OPT / CPT | This means the employer is open to considering applicants who have access to Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT)
  • Will sponsor or does not require US work visa | This means the employer is willing to file a petition to sponsor an employee’s work visa after use of your eligible OPT

To search for Jobs / Internships

  • Log into Handshake and select the “Jobs” tab at the top
  • Select “All filters” when viewing the filter options
  • Scroll to find the Work Authorization category, then filter by “Accepts OPT/CPT” and/or “Will sponsor or does not require US work visa.”

To identify employers at Career Fairs

  • Log into Handshake and select the “Events” tab
  • Select the “Career Fairs” filter
  • Click on the career fair of interest
  • Scroll to select “View All Employers”
  • A new page will open. Select “All filters,” then filter by “Accepts OPT / CPT” and/or “Will sponsor or does not require US work visa.”


Provides country-specific information on work authorization in countries across the globe, including the United States and Canada.

Search the H1B database to identify American employers that submitted petitions for H1B visas. Search by location, occupation, or company name to determine companies seeking your skills and expertise.

Access GoinGlobal through your Handshake account under Career Center >> Resources.


Position descriptions only reveal a snapshot of information about the company or organization to which you may apply. What else should you learn about prospective employers?

  • Mission and values
  • Products and services
  • Company culture
  • Awards and achievements
  • Locations
  • Job titles
  • Parent company and subsidiaries


You can research geographic areas, career fields, and employers with the following tools.

  • Company or city websites
  • Company social media sites
  • Industry news and professional association websites
  • Online tools such as CareerShift, GoinGlobal
  • Auburn alumni and other professionals in your desired field | LinkedIn

Career Fairs and Networking Events 
Employers send recruiters to Auburn throughout the year to connect with potential talent for their organization. Check the Engineering Career Events calendar for fairs and events where you can meet employers. Make sure to practice a personal introduction of yourself to prepare!


Informational Interviewing
Informational interviewing provides a great way to connect with employers or alumni regardless of job openings or an invitation to interview for a position. It's a great way to learn about a company or profession and establish contacts for the future. Set specific goals for contacts you'd like to reach out to and begin growing your professional network. These interviews can be conducted in person, by phone, or on a virtual platform.


  • Do not ask for a job or reference. Instead, focus on gathering information and industry insight / advice.
  • Prepare in advance, research the organization, and develop pre-written questions.
  • Request a 20-30 minute window of time and offer specific dates and times to conduct the conversation.


Phone and E-mail
Phone and e-mail can be means for setting up informational interviews or initial contact with an employer or alumni contact. You can also use phone or e-mail to follow up on applications. It is helpful to have a name to use as a referral source. If there is not a contact list in the job posting, call and ask for a name and title. In addition, visit Building Connections for ways to find company contacts.