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I'm currently studying embedded systems engineering (think software engineering but instead of apps it's IoT) and I'm having a lot of trouble finding potential companies for internships.

There doesn't seem to be any internship opportunities directly posted by companies in my area (or country for that matter), so I have to find companies that would employ people by using the title I'd have when I graduate.

However, most job openings are posted by third-party recruitment agencies that do everything in their power to hide what company the posting is coming from (I guess this is done to prevent potential applicants from bypassing the recruitment company). The thing is, I can't directly apply for these postings as I'm not looking for a full-time position and when I try contacting the recruitment agency to explain I'm looking for an internship, they understandably blow me off (since they wouldn't get a commission for bringing an intern to the company).

So, my question in a nutshell would be:

How can I find companies that have engineers/departments within my area of expertise to look for internships bypassing all the recruitment spam which hides the company's names thoroughly?

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  • Can you be a bit clearer about where you are currently searching. You say: "posted", but where are you looking? – Gregory Currie May 21 '20 at 7:05
  • @GregoryCurrie I mostly search using google, using different keywords such as "embedded systems [location]" which brings up websites such as indeed and other, smaller job boards. Usually the description of the posting has been made extremely vague and can't be used to trace back which company the job posting is coming from. – user118394 May 21 '20 at 7:14
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    Yep. Recruiters do that deliberately. If you haven't tried, you can take a look at Glassdoor. I think that place is recruiter free. No idea what the situation is like in Netherlands, but here but usually internships are usually advertised as such. So unless it's advertised as an internship, it's not an internship. – Gregory Currie May 21 '20 at 7:35
  • Yeah, I've been having a lot of trouble finding adverts for actual intership positions in my field, so I'm trying to find companies hiring for full-time positions to attempt to apply there for an internship without an actual posting :) hopefully that'll work – user118394 May 21 '20 at 7:43
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    If you want some unsolicited career advice, I'd just look for general embedded systems engineering positions and not specifically IoT (if you're not already). After a couple of years, no reason why you can't get more specific. Maybe that will make things a bit easier for you. – Gregory Currie May 21 '20 at 7:47
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How can I find companies that have engineers/departments within my area of expertise to look for internships bypassing all the recruitment spam which hides the company's names thoroughly?

Work with your university's placement office. They usually have lists of companies offering internships.

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Depending on your university, the alumni association may be of great help.

They could help you get in touch with previous students now employed, who can in turn put you in touch with the right person in their company.

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Here are some ideas, you need to judge if they work in your case.

  • do a keywords-based search for companies in your area; example: internship, job, IoT, embedded engineering, ...
  • use "generic" job sites, which present the company names too; save the list, you might need it later;
  • discuss with your professors at the university, ask for company recommendations; they already have experience from the previous years, from previous students;
  • if available, talk to the dedicated services provided by your university (e.g., the careers service);
  • discuss with your colleagues, you might find some who are both talkative and informed;
  • if available, go through a directory of companies operating in your area of interest;
  • just go around business parks, see what companies are there;
  • visit business centers, they also concentrate several companies.

Suggested by @StephanBranczyk (thank you):

  • LinkedIn;
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    In addition to your third point: talk to the careers service at your university. – Philip Kendall May 21 '20 at 8:17
  • Yes, that is true. However, different universities have different structures and provide different services. OP needs to find their way in their university. – virolino May 21 '20 at 8:42
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    Please add LinkedIn to this list. You can ask for introductions, informational interviews, etc. LinkedIn can be a very powerful tool. – Stephan Branczyk May 21 '20 at 10:12
  • Will somebody please explain the downvotes? – virolino May 22 '20 at 5:57

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