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Professional Confessional

A blog providing tips and resources for life after college

TIP: Staying Connected: Follow-Up and the Importance of a Thank You

Set yourself apart from other interns by staying connected and following up with your supervisor and key contacts (your network).  It is important to continue to build your professional brand and reputation after your internship.  A great example is to send a handwritten thank you note expressing your appreciation for the experience, guidance, and growth.  You will make a great impression if you send a note to everyone who impacted your experience.  Also, if you find an interesting article related to their industry, share it with them.  It shows you have interest in news and trends related to their company and industry.  The more you give to them; the more they will be willing to give back to you.

Read further as our employers share their thoughts on the importance of staying connected, following up, and sending thank you notes at the conclusion of an internship.

Julie Armstrong, Talent Management

Follow-up is incredibly important for a few reasons…

First, it expresses your gratitude to the person or team that has given you a great opportunity to gain experience and grow professionally.

Second, you may be working alongside other interns – if they send thank you notes, you don’t want to be the intern who didn’t follow-up; if they don’t send notes, and you do, you’ll stand out!

Third, employers are often thinking about whether their interns would make good, prospective full-time hires…following up is a way of showing your interest in coming on-board after graduation.  Moreover, follow up is a way to maintain your network – you may need to call upon your manager for a reference or to make an introduction during your job search for a full-time role.  So, cultivate that relationship!!


Lauren Dealexandris, Director of Intermodal Finance

Follow up is important throughout your career for several reasons. The contacts you make during that important first career experience may become future references, networking connections, or a potential hiring manager. We seriously consider our interns for full time positions, so that impression counts. In addition, it is an unbelievably small world and you never know when paths will cross again, so it is wise to build instead of overlook or burn bridges. Finally, this type of correspondence shows professionalism and maturity; it is not something everyone does, and you may be surprised at the responsiveness from employers. This helps build your brand and reputation with employers.

Ashton Longest, Recruiter

Timely follow-up is a good show of faith. It’s a decidedly effective way to reiterate your interest in a firm. Thank you notes are always greatly appreciated, but unfortunately, they often have spelling or grammatical errors which can hinder a candidate in the process. So, I would suggest exhaustively proofreading any thank you notes or emails before they are sent. In regards to promptly addressing a full-time offer following an internship, we highly value a quick response.


Category: Professional Development

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