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Top 5 Internships for Car Enthusiasts

Thu, Apr 19, 2012

Internship Information

Whether you’re studying to become an auto mechanic, you hope to enjoy a fruitful career designing the cars of the tomorrow, or you have a passion for the classic automobiles of yesteryear, you might be looking for an internship to act as a springboard that will get you one step closer to your dreams of working in the automotive industry. But if you’re not quite sure where to start or what’s in your wheelhouse (so to speak), here are a few of the top fields to look into when you’re seeking a vehicle-related internship that speaks to your love of all things automotive.

  1. Car museum. The history of mechanical transportation is not terribly long; motorized vehicles have only been around for a little more than a century. But because the industry is consumer-driven (literally and figuratively), historians have plenty to work with. In truth, it doesn’t matter if your interest in cars leans towards design or you merely love to tinker with engines – it behooves you to gain an understanding of what came before and how the personal automobile progressed over time. So nabbing an internship at a car museum is a great way to gain a deeper understanding of the automotive world, no matter what field you plan to move into after graduation (or certification).
  2. Auto shop. It is a sad truth of our society that very few people who own cars actually know how they work. If you asked the average person on the street to look under the hood, they might be able to accurately identify the battery and the dipstick. Everything else is likely a mystery. If you’re going to work in any sector of the automotive industry it’s probably a good idea to have at least a basic knowledge of how internal combustion (or alternative) engines function. An internship at an auto shop could be an incredible learning experience, even if you don’t intend to take the ASE test and become a grease monkey.
  3. Automaker. This is the dream job for many who aspire to have an influence on the automobile industry of the future. While you might be relegated to answering phones or fetching coffee for low-level execs, there’s still plenty of opportunity to learn your way around, see the types of jobs that are available, and network with current staff. Despite the fact that the automotive industry makes billions of dollars each year, it is still rather insular, especially at the corporate level. So getting in good with up-and-comers will no doubt deliver returns (such as job opportunities) down the road.
  4. Collector assistant. Celebrities like Jay Leno and Jerry Seinfeld aren’t the only ones out there collecting classic cars. There are plenty of dealers that buy, restore, collect, display, and sell classic cars. You might not have an easy time securing such an internship, but collectors have paperwork that needs to be filed just like everyone else, so do a little digging to secure this off-the-wall opportunity.
  5. Ad agency. Not everyone who loves cars will have the opportunity to get their hands on them. But there are many adjacent fields that will still allow you to count yourself amongst those who work in the automotive industry. While smog testing and handing out vehicle insurance rates may not sound very appealing to some, the opportunity to create multinational ad campaigns for a company like Ford or BMW could be right up your alley. So look into internships at ad agencies that work with automakers as one possible way to blend your love of cars and your future career.
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1 Comments For This Post

  1. Gianna Trapani Says:

    I am young woman of 23 who found a passion for classic car restoration work. Being a woman in this field has made it difficult for me in securing a chance to enter into this field. Men do
    not take me seriously and find an excuse for not hiring me before I am even given the chance for them to see my work. Most shops want experience , but without the chance to prove myself how can I get the experience. I do have 4 years experience in a small shop but need to go further with my career Therefore I am looking to enter into a internship program with a reputable company who will take me seriously and give me the experience I need. Hope to one day have my own restoration shop.

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