I have been thinking about what I want to be doing for the summer, and one of the things I have been considering was to try and find an internship at a game company. Does anyone know if game companies hire interns?
closed as off topic by MichaelHouse♦, Maik Semder, Josh♦, Ali1S232, jhocking Jan 14 '13 at 17:47
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Yes, companies will hire interns. This includes game companies. Which ones do so, and who to contact about getting an internship are always changing. Additionally it will depend on what kind of development you want to do. It's up to you to research what's available. Start looking early as these things will fill up fast. You can search using resources like Tetrad suggested in the comments, or find local companies that are hiring for other positions using game developer job search sites like gamasutra.com, and see if an internship position would also be available. IGN has an article for additional resources.
Decide what kind of development you want to do, then find game companies in your area that do that kind of development (or outside your area if you're willing to travel, but it might be difficult to come out ahead financially if you're moving). Contact these companies to find out if they have any positions available for the type of work you're looking to do. Be prepared to present a résumé and/or portfolio of work.
Internships are a good opportunity to improve your knowledge and skills. They're also important for getting your foot in the door and networking with peers in the industry you're interested in. Make sure you take your work seriously and make a good impression.
You'll find that some internships are paid and others are not. It's up to you to decide if you can afford to work for free and if the experience is enough of a compensation for you. Asking around and finding out more about the company you'd be working for is important. You don't want to work for free some place that has a bad reputation as it won't be beneficial to you when future employers are looking at your work history.
Byte56's answer is nice, but I think I can improve it a bit more, basing on my own experience.
It really matters what do you want to do in the game development process. For example, you can learn a lot of good programming practices in the software company that isn't related to game dev at all. Good SW companies can have better code culture, and experience obtained there is invaluable. Yet still, it might be easier to get an internship there; there are of course other factors involved, mostly by your place of living.
As an artist, it might be work looking into general design/art interships.
The most problematic part is the game design, in which case you really don't have much choice.
TL;DR Choose your intership place basing on knowledge and experience you want to get, not on the goal of the company itself.