Breaking Into the Field: How to Land a Project Management Internship With Zero Experience


Welcome, dear reader! If you’re here, it’s likely because you have a spark of interest in the dynamic world of project management. Perhaps, you’re ready to immerse yourself in this exciting realm, but there’s one question nagging at you, “How do I secure a project management internship with no experience under my belt?” Well, you’re in the right place!

This is a common conundrum faced by many aspiring project managers. But fret not, because we’re about to unveil an actionable game plan that can turn your dream into reality. This roadmap includes seven crucial steps:

1. Learn the basics of project management: Understand what project management involves and familiarize yourself with key concepts and terminologies.

2. Master project management software: Get a grip on the software tools widely used in the project management world.

3. Get certified: Acquire a project management certification to validate your skills.

4. Get experience: Seek opportunities to apply your knowledge in real-world scenarios.

5. Build a powerful resume: Develop a resume that showcases your skills, certification, and any relevant experiences.

6. Network: Establish connections with professionals in the field.

7. Apply for project management internships: Now it’s time to take the plunge!

Now, let’s embark on this journey and break down each of these steps to get you closer to your desired project management internship.

1. Learn the Basics of Project Management

When it comes to securing project management internships, the first step is understanding the terrain. And that means diving headfirst into the basics of project management. But what does this entail? Well, at its core, project management revolves around organizing and directing resources to achieve specific goals within a set timeframe.

You’ll need to familiarize yourself with key concepts such as scope, schedule, cost, and risk management. You should also understand the fundamental project management phases: initiation, planning, execution, monitoring and control, and closure.

To help you navigate these waters, a great resource is “Project Management Uncovered: A Beginner’s Journey Through the Basics” on Zengile Projects. It’s a comprehensive guide, tailored to beginners, that explores project management’s many facets. This knowledge will not only empower you with the basics but also give you a strong foundation that you can further build upon. And if your specifically interested in IT projects, you’ll also want to check out

Remember, project management internships look for candidates who show a keen understanding of the fundamentals. So, make sure you have a solid grasp of the basics. This initial learning phase might seem daunting, but it’s an essential starting point on your journey to becoming a project manager.

2. Master Project Management Software

On your path to securing project management internships, equipping yourself with a robust toolkit is a vital step. No, we’re not talking about actual tools, but digital ones — project management software to be precise.

In today’s interconnected world, project management is no longer about keeping track of tasks and deadlines on spreadsheets. It’s about leveraging sophisticated software tools designed to make project management more efficient and effective. From organizing tasks to facilitating team communication and tracking progress, these tools are the backbone of modern project management.

Software platforms like Asana, Trello, and Microsoft Project are industry staples. They provide a wide range of features that simplify project management. For instance, Asana excels in task allocation and team collaboration, while Microsoft Project is renowned for its robust scheduling capabilities.

To increase your chances of landing project management internships, it’s crucial to get comfortable with these platforms. How do you do this? Sign up for free trials, create mock projects, and practice using different functionalities. As you learn to navigate these tools, you’ll not only be enhancing your software proficiency, but you’ll also be boosting your overall competency as a future project manager.

3. Get Certified: Validate Your Skills for a Project Management Internship

Acquiring a project management certification is a significant milestone on your journey to a project management internship. It not only showcases your dedication to the field but also validates your skills and knowledge. Here’s a two-step guide to help you earn your first project management certification:

Step 1: Earn Your Contact Hours: Before you can apply for a certification, you need to fulfill a basic requirement: completing 23 contact hours of project management education. And where can you get this education? Platforms like Udemy offer comprehensive project management courses tailored for beginners. These courses not only contribute towards your contact hours but also deepen your understanding of project management.

Step 2: Apply for CAPM: With your contact hours under your belt, the next step is to apply for the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) certification. This is an entry-level certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that’s recognized worldwide. Earning this certification provides proof of your understanding of the fundamental knowledge, terminology, and processes of effective project management.

Achieving this certification could be the game-changer in your pursuit of a project management internship, giving you a significant edge over other candidates who lack this validation of their skills.

4. Get Experience: Your Gateway to a Project Management Internship

So, you’ve grasped the basics of project management, familiarized yourself with key software tools and have an industry recognized certification. What’s next on your journey to securing a project management internship? Getting some real-world experience under your belt.

“But how do I get experience if I’ve never worked in project management before?” you might ask. The answer lies in the world of freelancing. Offering your services as a freelance project manager can be a fantastic way to get started, and platforms like Fiverr offer an excellent avenue for this.

Fiverr is an online marketplace for freelance services where you can offer project management services at an affordable rate. This can provide a win-win situation – clients get to work with an enthusiastic, budding project manager at a competitive price, and you gain invaluable real-world experience.

Though you might start with smaller, less lucrative projects, these assignments are the stepping stones towards bigger opportunities. As you successfully complete these tasks, you build a portfolio showcasing your project management skills, making your application for a project management internship much stronger.

Remember, experience is often the bridge between theory and practice, and this hands-on exposure could be the ticket to your dream project management internship.

5. Build a Powerful Resume: Your Ticket to a Project Management Internship

Now that you have solidified your project management foundation, mastered software tools, gained hands-on experience, and even earned a certification, the next step is packaging all these accomplishments effectively. Your resume, the single document that can make or break your chances of securing a project management internship, is where it all comes together.

Creating a compelling resume is like crafting a marketing pitch for yourself. It’s where you showcase your skills, highlight your certification, and share your experiences to catch a hiring manager’s eye.

Start by clearly stating your objective — pursuing a project management internship — at the beginning of your resume. Follow this with a section highlighting your skills, especially those you’ve acquired through your education, certification, and hands-on experiences. Include all relevant project management software you’ve mastered and any significant projects you’ve successfully handled, either in a learning environment or as a freelancer.

Don’t forget to spotlight your Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) certification. This is a massive achievement that shows your commitment to the field and distinguishes you from others.

Finally, if you have testimonials or endorsements, especially from your freelance work, include these to add credibility.

Remember, your resume is your first impression. Make it powerful, make it compelling, and most importantly, make it a true reflection of your journey in project management so far.

6. Network: Building Bridges Toward a Project Management Internship

As you journey towards a project management internship, an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked is networking. Establishing connections with professionals in the field not only opens the door for learning opportunities but also potential internship offers.

In the realm of project management, who you know can sometimes be just as important as what you know. By connecting with seasoned project managers, you have the chance to gain insights that are not available in books or courses. You also increase your visibility within the field, which could lead to internship opportunities.

So, where do you begin to network? LinkedIn is a fantastic starting point. Here, you can connect with project management professionals, join relevant groups, and participate in discussions. Another great resource is the Project Management Institute (PMI). Attending PMI events, both online and offline, can put you in touch with a community of project managers from different industries.

Remember, when networking, the goal isn’t just to collect contacts but to build meaningful relationships. Show genuine interest in people’s work, ask insightful questions, and share your journey towards a project management internship. As these connections deepen, so do your chances of landing that dream internship.

7. Apply for Project Management Internships: The Final Leap

You’ve worked hard to build your skills, gain experience, earn a certification, and even forge valuable connections in the field of project management. Now, it’s time for the big leap – applying for project management internships.

Searching and applying for internships is a process in itself. Begin by scanning job portals, company websites, and LinkedIn for available opportunities. Remember, every application should be crafted with care. Tailor your resume and cover letter to fit each role, emphasizing your skills, experiences, and why you’re a strong fit for the internship.

Take advantage of the network you’ve built. Inform your connections that you’re seeking a project management internship. They could provide useful tips, job leads, or even refer you within their own companies.

Lastly, don’t be disheartened if you don’t land the first internship you apply for. Persistence is key in this process. Keep refining your approach, continue learning, and stay connected with your network. Your dedication and hard work will eventually steer you towards the perfect project management internship.

Remember, this is the culmination of your journey, a testament to all your effort and learning. So, take a deep breath and dive in – your project management career is waiting to take off!


In conclusion, kick-starting your journey towards a project management internship without prior experience might seem challenging, but it’s absolutely achievable. With a strategic approach that involves learning the basics, mastering project management software, gaining hands-on experience, earning a certification, crafting a strong resume, networking, and finally, applying for internships, you can make your way into this exciting field. Remember, each step is a stepping stone, paving your path towards that coveted project management internship. So, don’t delay – start today, and who knows? The world of project management might be your next big career adventure!

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