Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship Program: How to Develop A Great Application

Each year, there are a number of applications for the Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship but only one person receives funding.  It is, then, very important to develop the best application you can.  The following are tips to help you in your quest for the Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship.

Resume

It is important to develop a resume that has no spelling or grammatical errors.  If you have previous experiences that relate to the type of work you would like to do at the National Trust or relevant coursework, be sure to include that information on your resume. 

Bottom line:  The Committee prefers that your resume has no spelling and/or grammatical errors.

Faculty Recommendation

Please begin the process of approaching a faculty member for a recommendation early.  When you are asking him or her for a reference, be sure to provide them with a brief statement describing the Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship and also explaining why you are applying for the internship.  Provide the faculty member with a resume and request a pick-up date for the reference – in a sealed envelope – preferably a few days before the application is due.  Send them a short e-mail a few days before the arranged pick-up date to remind them of the deadline. 

It is very important that the faculty recommendation be included with your application when you hand it in.  If you are abroad and must e-mail the application, the recommendation must be delivered by the faculty member to Pam Grande at the Career Center before or on the day of the application deadline. 

Bottom Line:  The faculty recommendation must be in a sealed envelope and included with your application when it is handed into the Career Center.

Application Essay

Although the above components of the Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship application are key, perhaps the most important section of the application is the essay. 

In a one to two page statement, detail your interest in interning at the National Trust and how the experience fits into your long term goals. 

The Committee really wants to know why this internship is important to you.  The best essays generally take a “past, present and future” approach. 

First, tell us what in the past has inspired you to explore this career (courses, experiences, exploratory searches, events, courses, and/or internships). 

Next, explain to the Committee what you think you might like to do at the National Trust.  Basically, the Nancy Campbell Internship is a special internship that is provided funds by an endowment fund at Wesleyan University.  Therefore, the National Trust is committed to placing the Wesleyan recipient in a capacity that works for him or her.  Opportunities can range from policy work to preservation to public relations.  See http://www.nationaltrust.org for general information but also explore the entire National Trust site to see where you think you might like to work at the Trust. 

Finally, tell us what contribution this experience will have toward your future goals and give us a sense of what you think are your future goals.  You do not need to have specific goals (though some of our applicants do); just give us an idea of what you think you might like to do some day. 

Most applicants write anywhere from a few paragraphs to two pages.  Generally, we have found that one short paragraph doesn’t give you an opportunity to explain to us who you are and why we should fund you.  Finally, we do expect good, grammatically correct writing free of spelling errors!

The following is a good example of an essay for the Nancy Campbell/National Trust for Historic Preservation Summer Internship.  Rebecca Linden ‘06, who wrote this essay, received the funds to participate in the summer of 2005.

Bottom Line:  Your statement must be compelling; you need to persuade the Committee to fund you to spend the summer at the Trust.  We need to understand why this experience is important to you as an individual. 

Please remember that counseling staff are available at the Career Center to review your entire application.

Questions?  Contact pgrande@wesleyan.edu