How I landed Research Internships at Google and Microsoft as an undergrad

collage of Google and microsoft logos

Google Research

The best way to know about openings at Google is their careers page (set alerts to stay updated).

  1. Resume: CG>8.5, prior internships and projects. One thing I’d like to point is you do not need to have prior experience in a subject relevant to what you’re applying for. I think all your resume needs to show is that you have interest in tech and have good problem solving skills. For instance, all my previous work was related to quantum computing.
  2. Interviews: I’d strongly recommend you check out the book — Cracking the Coding Interview, by Gayle Laakmann McDowell. It would be useful to brush up your DSA, practice problems and most importantly, gain insights on how to give an interview. Apart from that, LeetCode and GeeksforGeeks (an any other platform you prefer) should be good for practice.

Microsoft Research

The hiring procedure for a Research Intern is considerably different. You could check for openings at their careers page and apply there. I would recommend you to check out the webpages of the researchers and groups at Microsoft and email the group you are interested to work with. About 4 months before the start date of your internship should be a good time. Usually an opening is listed on the group webpage, but send an email even if its not!

  1. Brush up your basics: If your applying to an ML group revise SVMs, regression, classification, clustering and other basic algorithms. Be clear with the advantages and disadvantages of each.
  2. Know you resume thoroughly. Do not write things on the resume that you have not done, or you do not know well.
  3. This is obvious but equally important: Be honest. If you do not know something or don’t remember, let them know!

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