So Your Internship is Wrapping Up? Do This.

From effective communication of your departure to building a professional portfolio, this guide covers every aspect of ensuring a successful internship wrap-up.
May 6, 2021
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As your internship journey nears its end, it's crucial to ensure that you leave a lasting positive impression. The final weeks of your internship provide valuable opportunities to solidify relationships, gather feedback, and set the stage for potential future opportunities. 

With two weeks remaining, you should:

Reflect on Your Internship Experience

Before you dive into concluding your internship, take some time to reflect on your overall experience. Consider the following:

  • What have you learned during your internship?
  • How have you grown personally and professionally?
  • What were your accomplishments and contributions?
  • Were there any challenges you faced and overcame?
  • What skills have you developed or improved?

Communicate Your Departure

Notify your supervisor and colleagues about your impending departure with ample lead time. While a customary two-week notice is often the norm, it's essential to adhere to any specific timelines outlined in your internship contract. Initiating this early communication enables your team to effectively prepare for your departure, facilitating a seamless transition.

Your team may not have your departure date firmly scheduled. Therefore, sending a farewell email on the Monday of your final week is vital to ensure everyone is aware of your impending departure.

Transfer Responsibilities or Tasks

Before it's too late, start a conversation with your supervisor about what wrapping up and transitioning your work looks like. This clear communication will help you meet their expectations for what you're leaving behind and what still needs to be accomplished. For your work to have a significant impact, and sustain itself after your departure, the organization needs to understand exactly what you accomplished and tasks that need to be shifted to an employee or the next intern. You might even spend the last week or so of your internship training someone at the organization who needs key information to continue moving your project or work forward.

Schedule Exit Meetings

Request exit meetings with your supervisor and colleagues to discuss your internship experience. These meetings serve multiple purposes:

  • Express gratitude: Use this opportunity to express your appreciation for the learning experiences, guidance, and mentorship you've received during your internship.
  • Seek feedback: Ask for constructive feedback on your performance. Inquire about areas where you excelled and areas where you could improve. This feedback is invaluable for your personal and professional growth.
  • Discuss future opportunities: If you are interested in potential future opportunities with the organization, such as full-time positions or additional internships, express your interest and inquire about the application process.

Coffee Dates with Connections

Prioritize scheduling coffee meetings or virtual Zoom catch-ups with individuals you wish to maintain connections with before the hectic final days of your internship approach. Make sure to keep an eye out for someone who could be a mentor.

Complete Outstanding Projects

Before leaving, ensure that you complete any outstanding projects or tasks assigned to you. Meet deadlines and make an effort to tie up loose ends. If there are projects that cannot be completed within your internship period, provide clear documentation and instructions for your successor or colleagues who will take over the responsibilities.

Gather Feedback

While some internships may have a formal review process at the end, others may not. Take the initiative to schedule a meeting with your supervisor to discuss your performance and areas for improvement. Embrace constructive feedback as an opportunity for growth, as your internship is a valuable learning experience. Feel free to open up about your career goals, seek advice, and express gratitude for their mentorship.

With one week remaining, you should:

Gather Numbers

Prioritize data gathering while you still have access to various platforms like social media accounts, CRMs, and email marketing platforms from your current internship. Collect relevant metrics and numbers that may prove valuable as you pursue future internships or job opportunities.

Discuss Potentially Returning

If you had a positive experience during your internship and aspire to return to the organization as an intern or full-time employee in the future, don't hesitate to express your interest. Simply convey your enthusiasm, saying something like, "I truly enjoyed my time here this summer and would welcome the opportunity to stay involved or return next year if there's a chance." Share your passion for the company and your commitment to its success.

Seek Professional References

If you had a positive working relationship with your supervisor or colleagues, consider asking them for professional references or LinkedIn recommendations. These endorsements can boost your credibility when seeking future opportunities. 

You can say something like, "I'd appreciate the opportunity to use you as a reference when I apply for future internships or jobs. Your insights into my growth and contributions this summer would be invaluable. Would it be acceptable to stay in touch?" It's important to specify what you've gained or enjoyed during your internship and express gratitude for their guidance and mentorship. If you didn't establish a strong rapport with your supervisor or believe they can't offer a positive reference, it's perfectly acceptable not to make this request.

Prepare a Portfolio

About a week before your internship concludes, discuss the possibility of creating a portfolio with your supervisor. Inquire about which documents or projects you can include, bearing in mind that some materials may be confidential. Seek advice on selecting the most impressive samples of your work. Taking the initiative to compile a portfolio not only demonstrates your dedication to your professional growth but also underscores the substantial contributions you've made during your internship.

Reflect on Your Goals

As you wrap up your internship, take some time to reflect on your career goals and aspirations. Consider how your internship experience aligns with your goals and what you've learned about your desired career path. Use these insights to make informed decisions about your next steps.

Reflect on what you learned in these four areas:

  • Skills – what do you know how to do now (or do better) than when you started?
  • Knowledge – what do you know more about now than when you started?
  • Personal – what have you realized about yourself through your summer experiences? What have you learned about the world of work or any particular industry?
  • Miscellaneous – what surprised you this summer? What did you learn that you didn't expect? 

In your final days of the internship, you should:

Organize Your Work

Compile and organize your work and projects to make it easy for your team to access and reference in your absence. Create a clear document or file structure, label files appropriately, and provide any necessary explanations or context. This organization demonstrates your professionalism and thoughtfulness.

Say Goodbye

You've finished the work, but don't forget about the people! Before you leave, please send a brief email to the entire team, thanking them for their time and guidance. Give everyone your contact information, gather their business cards, or connect with them on LinkedIn.

Then, for anyone you worked closely with, send a separate email with a more personalized thank-you. You can also politely ask if they would be comfortable being listed as a reference or if they could provide you with a LinkedIn recommendation. Both can be your ticket to a future full-time gig.

Follow the Company on Social Media

Staying connected with the company even after your internship can be beneficial, especially if you have aspirations to work there in the future. By keeping up with the company's updates on social media, you'll demonstrate your continued interest and engagement. Additionally, it can provide you with insights and talking points for potential interviews or follow-ups with your former colleagues.

After you've officially ended your internship, you should:

Update your resume. 

It's easier to jot down your responsibilities and accomplishments when you're in the closing phases of your internship or immediately after, rather than letting time pass and getting swept up in school. Check out our latest guide to make sure you're properly using resume keywords.

Stay in touch

You worked hard during your internship, making sure it was worth it. Follow up so that you don't lose connections. Follows should be personalized and friendly, something along the lines of:

"Hi [Supervisor's Name],

I hope you're doing well. I wanted to reach out and express my gratitude for the opportunity to intern with [Company Name]. It was an invaluable experience that has contributed significantly to my professional growth.

I recently came across updates about [Company Name] on [Social Media Platform], and I'm impressed with the exciting developments and achievements. It's clear that the company continues to thrive and make a positive impact.

Even though my internship has come to an end, I remain committed to learning and growing in my field. As I embark on the next phase of my career journey, I am actively working on [mention what you're currently working on, e.g., refining my resume, exploring new opportunities, etc.].

I believe that staying connected and seeking guidance from experienced professionals like you is essential for my continued development. Your mentorship during my internship was invaluable, and I am truly appreciative of your support.

If there's any way we can stay in touch or if you have any insights, advice, or opportunities you'd like to share, I would be extremely grateful. Your expertise and perspective are highly regarded, and I believe that your guidance can greatly contribute to my future success.

Thank you once again for the opportunity to be a part of [Company Name]. I look forward to any future interactions and wish you continued success in all your endeavors."

Update your Resume

While your internship is still fresh in your mind, update your resume. Write strong bullet points that tell the future reader of your resume what you accomplished this summer and the impact it had on the organization. The more detail you provide, the more your future employer will learn about your skills, abilities, and knowledge.


That's right! You worked hard, so take some time to do nothing, sleep in, catch up with family and friends, unwind, and recharge. Take care of yourself now, so you don't burnout early.

By following these steps, you'll wrap up your internship successfully, leaving a positive impression and paving the way for future opportunities.

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