Transcripts for First Year Internship Applications

Sometimes you may encounter an internship posting that asks for you to include a copy of your transcript. As a first year undergraduate student at MIT, you might be wondering what you might need to provide to them if transcripts aren’t available for you until after the end of the Fall semester.  There are a couple of different documents you can request from the Registrar’s Office that may be able to help you bridge the gap between the due date of the internship application and the release of transcripts.

A transcript is your official academic record. It lists all the subjects you have completed, as well as credit units, grades, GPA, and (if applicable) any degrees you have received from the Institute. If you have your transcript available, and the employer requests one, this will best meet their request. If you do not yet have your transcript, there are other documents provided through the Registrar’s Office that may be able to support your application:

  • Subject registration letters: This will provide proof of your current enrollment status and subject registration. Since subjects do not appear on transcripts until the final grades are reported at the end of the term, this may be the most beneficial document to submit to an employer before your transcript is ready. This will include an in-progress subjects which may help employers see the coursework you are currently taking as well.
  • Enrollment certifications: In some cases an enrollment certification may meet the needs set forth for scholarships, insurance, internships/employment. This document will include your level, registration load status for the current term, and degree you are pursuing.
  • Attendance & degree certifications: Given that these have limited amounts of information (namely start/end dates of your attendance, plus any degrees awarded), this may not be the best document to request in lieu of a transcript.

Employers who request transcripts as part of their application process for jobs and internships may have different reasons for doing so. They might want to verify your GPA, classes taken, or other aspects of your education. If you are uncertain what information may be beneficial to submit in lieu of a transcript, you may want to ask your recruiter or conduct informational interviews with alumni or students who previously interned there to gain deeper insight.

In some instances, it may be beneficial to submit more than one of these documents to satisfy the employer’s need. Handshake provides you the opportunity to upload additional documents beyond a resume or cover letter. Since some of these documents can become outdated after a semester or two, it will be important for you to revisit your documents periodically to make certain that your materials are current.

By Erik Pavesic
Erik Pavesic Assistant Director, Career Advising & Training