I am currently a junior in college, and will soon be starting my last internship of my college career. I am studying computer science and the internship is related to my field of study and interests.

The opportunity is with an internship program by a specific political party. I am very interested in both politics and computer science but I am slightly worried that this internship may not look favorable to a hiring manager in the private sector due to political affiliations.

From experience, does listing this internship have a negative impact on a resume?

  • 3
    It depends on the party affiliation of the person reviewing your resume, sadly. May 5, 2017 at 20:52

2 Answers 2


Hiring managers come in all political stripes and some would be favorably impressed, some would be unfavorably impressed and others wouldn't care either way, but just be happy with whatever actual accomplishments you made as a developer during the internship. How many people are affected depends on how negatively the organization is perceived by the general public. More would be be upset that you worked for the American Nazi party (or Black Lives Matter) than for the Republican party or some organization like Act Blue.

What you need to decide is how much you care about working for someone who would find it appalling that you did this type of work. It is difficult to hide your personal feelings on things all day long as someone of the opposite views makes it clear that he is only interested in people who agree with him. This tends to carry over to things besides politics as well as a judgemental personality type is very difficult to work for.

Personally I find this sort of thing tends to filter out the places I would not want to work in anyway. A reasonable private company to work for is going to have people of a broad variety of political opinions and hiring decisions are not made by political party (unless of course it is a political organization) or other irrelevant factors.

And of course, you may end up staying in the political sector. There are good jobs there too and the work is often interesting. If you find you like it, then the internship is an advantage.


Including such a listing on your resume isn't wrong, and superficially we'd all like to think it shouldn't affect your chances of an offer. When I reviewed resumes, it wasn't common for people to list any affiliations and if they had I don't think it would have mattered to me. I have worked with people of various political affiliations and I didn't care as long as the work progressed and the workplace was civil.

Still, we're all human beings and can be biased by things we feel strongly about. There is a reason for the old adage about not discussing "religion and politics."

If you're concerned, you can leave it off or maybe there is a way to list the skills you used and learned while working for that organization while de-emphasizing the political affiliation. On the other hand, is working with colleagues who share your beliefs important to you? Maybe putting it on is just fine.

Ultimately, only the people doing the hiring can tell you how it will affect your resume's reception.

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