From Albania to Zimbabwe: Quick! Get Your Internship Before It Is Gone

march7No matter where you are in the world, From Albania to Zimbabwe is the right place to find out about international happenings at Brown University! Hi, I’m Celina Stewart, a sophomore concentrating in International Relations here at Brown, and this is my space to give you updates and info about all things international at Brown, including international student life, international speakers, and different clubs and activities with an international focus. Read along and explore everything international at Brown! 

While I wait for those interview questions to roll in, I figured that I’d discuss something that all students – international or otherwise- will probably pursue during their time at Brown: Internships!

As many students scramble to fill out applications, get cover letters and resumes buffed and checked by Career Lab, and network through alumni connections, there is a strange sense of stress on campus that can be tangibly felt. It’s one thing to be slightly late studying for a test, another to be late with your application. Worst case, you find a typo moments after you send your application in, and can’t decide if you should recall your application and look overbearing or leave it there and look incompetent. What a great time. Much coffee is had, a few tears are shed, and most people end up with an opportunity they hope to pursue over the summer- maybe even leading to jobs.

Fortunately, Brown has a great advising program, and a very active Career Lab. For students interested in Careers in the Common Good, Brown has a program in New York that links students with start up organizations serving specific communities. The Career Lab also  frequently sends out job opportunities in a variety of sectors; various departments have networking meet and greets; there are multiple career fairs; different centers, such as the Swearer Center, send out lists of opportunities for special interests. Any student is welcome to apply to any program, and there are opportunities for funding available as well!

However, for international students, this can be a daunting task. It’s one thing to build a community at Brown- it’s another thing entirely to venture to New York, Boston, Washington, D. C., or even San Francisco or Seattle and try to build a community there over a short few months. Here’s a few tips:

1. Make sure you have your student and work Visas in order- most companies will look for documentation, so be prepared to present it.

2. Don’t limit yourself by language- many organizations and companies (especially in international affairs) look for multilingual interns- this can be a huge asset.

3. If you want to take the time to travel and see more of the United States, try to find a position in a place you are unfamiliar with- its a great way to see the country and get a better feel.

4. Look for opportunities to intern abroad or study abroad- there are a TON of opportunities to work and live abroad over the summer. If you want to go to a different country (possibly on a funded trip) look into this option- it can be a great way to travel on a budget and get valuable experience.

5. Stay in Providence and make the most of your time at Brown- you can take summer classes, do research in various labs or departments, or just find a job and live in summer housing. It’s a fun way to meet and get to know Brown students better, plus summer means time to take weekend trips to nearby cities like Boston or New York- you can’t go wrong.

No matter what you choose to do, you aren’t alone if you feel scared thinking about the internship or work experience over the summer. Schools like Brown can be competitive, and you will get a few rejections. Don’t give up- it’s something that nearly everyone goes through, no matter how qualified you might feel you are for a position. With all the opportunities suggested by different groups on Brown and through your own research, you’re sure to find a position you enjoy.

About the comic above- don’t take it too seriously! Internships (and summer opportunities of all kinds) can be an incredibly rewarding, resume-building, learning experience.

Have  questions or comments? Feel free to email me at celina_stewart@brown.edu and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible! Or, if you’d rather, just comment on the blog! 

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