Interning while abroad is extremely rewarding and I personally had a wonderful experience with it! If you’re on the edge of doing an internship or not, consider the following:
The Fun bits
I looked forward to going to my internship, because I was able to work on new skills and to learn more about British culture than I could anywhere else thus far. I would ask my supervisors questions, they’d ask me some, I had one friend who would share his British sweets with me… it was just an escape from the American students living in my flat and a chance for me to really broaden my horizons.
On the other hand, my internship was only 6 weeks and I’m a very “big picture” kind of person. Without a specific goal or project that would wrap up at the end, I sometimes felt like I was a bit lost, unwilling to commit my full attention to a project I felt would never come to fruition. I did little bits here and there, contributing as much as I could, but everything was very straightforward. Does that make sense?
Even though my internship was not exactly in an area I was looking at, that didn’t affect the value it provided to me. While I was looking for something with some more directly transferable skills to my future profession, the journalism-focused internship I was given taught me valuable lessons such as finding my voice, telling a story, and adapting to new situations. This internship can be a professional experience opportunity, but try not to underestimate the cultural effects, and the lessons that jumping into a new occupation can teach you!
Interning abroad isn’t just about going over there and jumping into a job, like it would be at home. You need a special visa, which cost me over $400! Not to mention you’re probably doing this internship for college credit now, so be prepared to write a bunch of papers and analyses of your time. This was actually something I somehow didn’t even consider, and man do I dislike having to write BS.