Career Development FAQ

CODE is the career development platform (powered by 12Twenty) exclusively for MCS, MSWE and MDS students. The modules included on this platform make it easy for students to track their internship/job search activities, register for career workshops, book career advising appointments, access career resources, and view job listings and companies looking to recruit.

All MCS, MSWE and MDS students are required to have a CODE account.  New incoming students will need to have activated their UCInetID’s before they can create their CODE accounts and user profiles.  For instructions on how to navigate CODE and create a student user profile, please review Section 1 of the CODE Student Toolkit.

As a student in MCS, MSWE, or MDS, you have access to a dedicated Career Development team that will provide you career development and job search support during your program.  Throughout the year, the Career Development team will deliver career workshops that have been strategically timed according to the internship and job search timelines for most students.  Please sign into CODE to see upcoming workshops and events, or book an one-on-one coaching appointment.

You also have the option to attend career and company events and workshops offered by UCI Division of Career Pathways (DCP).

The Career Development team will hold office hours beginning Fall Week 1.  In order to support as many students as we can prior to campus recruiting events scheduled in Fall, there will be additional office hours for individual appointments during Weeks 1 through 3.

Please note that appointments during Weeks 1 to 3 will be limited to Resume and Cover Letter review for incoming students.  Other coaching appointments such as LinkedIn review, mock interviews, will be available to all students beginning Fall Week 4.

You can make an appointment with an advisor on the Career Development team in CODE up to two weeks in advance.

Yes! Please check back for ICS/UCI events for 2022 – 2023 closer to the start of Fall 2022!* We encourage you attend to increase your chances of getting interviews and securing a summer internship and/or full-time position for after graduation:

UCI Fall Career Fair (In-Person)

Sep 29, 2022 | 10 – 2 pm | Location TBD

UCI Fall Career Fair (Virtual)

Oct 5, 2022 | 10 – 2 pm | Handshake

UCI STEM Career Fair (In-Person)

Oct 13, 2022 | 10 – 2 pm | Location TBD

UCI Internship & Career Fair

TBD | Winter 2023

EngiTECH Career Fair

TBD | Winter 2023

UCI Spring Career Fair

TBD | Spring 2023

* Schedules subject to change and additional events may become available. Please refer to CODE and Handshake for most up to date information throughout the year.

Large tech companies will participate in upcoming career fairs, but not all of them, due to the high volume of student interest they receive and because of their recruitment timelines.  In addition to career fairs, large tech companies may be on campus for other events, so always be on the lookout!

To register for upcoming UCI Career Fairs and to see employers who will be in attendance, please log into Handshake

Employer events hosted by the School of ICS or by ICS Professional Programs will be in ICS CODE.    

Most large tech companies will begin recruiting in Fall, some as early as July, but mostly late August/September.  Smaller to mid-size companies will usually start in Winter beginning as early as December/January. 

Once you have identified your target companies, we recommend you visit their career/university pages to find the internship postings, since most of them have deadlines that you should not miss.  If you do not see a posting, set up email notifications through their website and on job sites like LinkedIn, so you are alerted right away and can apply as soon as the position is posted.   

Regardless of when you apply, the most important thing is to make sure you meet the application deadline, if any.  We recommend you submit your application within the first two weeks of the position being posted, and at least one to two weeks prior to the deadline listed.

If you see an internship postings on a company’s website, and you are confident with your application materials, we recommend you apply as soon as possible.  Please also pay careful attention on the postings to see whether there is a deadline to apply, and plan to apply at least one to two weeks prior to that deadline. 

For larger companies, anyone you talk to will likely direct you to apply on the company website, including the recruiter.  It will not be harmful to do both.  However, another way is to reach out to your current contacts at the company, if you have any, to see if they are able to make a referral before you submit your online application.  This way, some job sites may allow you to include the employee’s name as your referral.  Even better, your contact may send your information to their seniors or managers, which will help you in the entire process and increase your chances for being invited for interviews. 

Industry research shows that on average, the entire recruitment process from sourcing a candidate to hiring a candidate takes 26 business days.  While this timeline is mostly accurate, this timeline does vary with different companies, regardless of their size. 

Some students received call backs within one week of application submission, some received call backs one or even two months later.  The key is your follow-up; sometimes that makes a significant difference in how fast the process will move forward, if it moves forward at all!

For internship positions, you will quickly learn that HR/recruiters play the role of a gatekeeper, ensure equal opportunities, and manage a fair and consistent recruiting process for all applicants.  As such, due to the high volume of applicants they receive, an HR/recruiter will most likely redirect you to apply via the company’s website.

For full-time positions, however, a company’s recruiting process can be a bit different wherein an HR/recruiter may be more responsive because they may actually be seeking you out to consider their company for employment.  Again, this varies depending on the company and how they leverage their recruiters. 

In all, while it is good to know recruiters, we encourage you focus your networking effort in connecting with actual working professionals (including UCI alumni) who are working or have worked at your target companies.  Usually, these contacts can offer additional advice for you and some may have insights as to hiring needs within their teams. 

First and foremost, let’s stay positive from the get-go and approach your search with the intended result of securing an internship.  This mental shift will help you tremendously throughout your search! 

That said, if you are truly concerned, here are some options in lieu of an internship:

  • Take on a personal project to boost your resume (e.g. build a website or app)
  • Work for a professor on campus
  • Volunteer for an organization that needs app/web development support
  • Learn a new skill through online courses from Udemy or Coursera
  • Participate in in-person or online Hackathons
  • Practice on Leetcode or HackerRank to improve performance on technical interviews
  • Fully dedicate time to networking with industry professionals and secure a full-time position for after graduation
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