Facebook University - Broke in London

Facebook University

What is Facebook University?

By Joshua Neil

Facebook University (or Facebook U, as the coolest people call it) is an 8-week paid internship program run by Facebook, on their campus in Menlo Park, California. This unique opportunity is geared towards those who are typically under-represented in the computer sciences, but is open to absolutely anyone. While the ability to travel to and work in America is essential, there are few other limitations stopping first-year programmers from applying: for those that are desperate for that prestigious first internship, this is definitely the place to be. Competition is fierce, but with recruitment opening again in January 2015, now is the time to get the skills and experience to beat everyone else!

Facebook University

Careers at Facebook- start yours today

Facebook Internship Requirements

Facebook U is open to any first year undergraduate, regardless of degree- that’s right, you don’t have to be an IT graduate to get in! You do, however, have to have a demonstrable and proven interest in science and technology, and know at least one programming language, whether it’s C++, Java, PHP, or any another. Beyond that, you’ll need a legal right to work in the United States between July 1st and August 31st, and the ability to work in Menlo Park, California– that means moving out there, we’re afraid. But beyond that, it’s up for grabs- so for those of you with some coding experience, you never know- try it, and you never know what you might get.

Intern Responsibilities

Just because you got one of the most prestigious internships in the world doesn’t mean that you don’t have to work. While in the company, you’ll have to work hard to prove yourself, working in a team of three on mobile projects and devices, applying the computer programming skills you already know and learning about new technology in the process.

The first two weeks of the course is iOS training to get you familiar with the operating systems they use: after that, the next six weeks will be hands-on project experience in a small team. During the course you’ll be paired with an mentor experienced in engineering who will guide you through and make sure that you’re getting everything you can out of the course.

Facebook University

Menlo Park- Facebook campus- pic source: cdn-static.zdnet.com

Other Facebook Internships

This isn’t the only way to get into Facebook- at the time of writing, Facebook has 49 positions open to university undergrads and graduates, from full-time positions to internships across the range of their departments- from Design to Finance to Software Engineering. For those looking for that special internship, check out their Facebook page for more information.

How to Apply

For those thinking that they don’t have a chance of getting a position with Facebook, don’t speak too soon- the company is known for being very accessible, open to anyone who can work hard and prove themselves, no matter which university they come from. There are reports around the internet of people being hired through simply displaying their work online, through career fairs, and even by playing Starcraft 2. However, for those looking for a more conventional way in, there are some simple tips which most interns agree will give you the best chance of getting that position at Facebook.

The two skills you’ll need to begin both start with a C: coding and communication. While a solid understanding of coding and computer sciences is a must, another that is widely mentioned is the ability to explain your work simply and efficiently, talk to people and network well. The interview process seems mostly to consist of two phone interviews as well as some coding and algorithmic problems, so being able to talk well on the phone, explain your previous projects and how you’d solve future ones is a must.

Beyond that, you need to be proactive– find Facebook recruiters on LinkedIn, and approach them through there; get your work out on the internet, and make sure it’s in a place that employers can see it, and it can catch their interest: and finally, make sure you don’t just wait for them come to you, but seek them out as well- go to careers fairs where they might be, and apply for the internships on their site.

Facebook University

Facebook interns- picture source: dtf8i4uzc1jap.cloudfront.net

Beyond that, the standard rules apply– make sure they you research the company thoroughly, not just half an hour beforehand- recruiters say that they can instantly tell when a candidate doesn’t know their company front and back, and if you can’t give them new, fresh, interesting and specific ideas about what you’d do or change in their company, it’s a bad sign. Jocelyn Goldfein, a Directing Engineer at Facebook, suggests that the most successful answers in an interview “are things you’d really like to change about Facebook”- so be creative, and don’t be afraid to put new, bold ideas across. And most importantly, passion is the key- have passion for the company, and you can’t do much wrong.

For being one of the most prestigious companies in the world, Facebook is open to anyone who can work hard, get their work out there, and have the passion and dedication to try their hardest for the position. Let that person be you, and you never know- next year you could be living your dream. For more from Facebook, including potential job opportunities, check out their Twitter account: @facebook.

For more on the latest jobs at Facebook, read our article about Jobs at Facebook London in October.