Sandra Clark is an Economics major graduating in May 2020. Last summer, Sandra interned with Fighting Blindness in Dublin, Ireland.
If you worked on a big project during your internship, please describe what you did to help. Fighting Blindness has a free counselling service called Need to Talk for people who are experiencing sight loss and for those who support the visually impaired. I assisted them with expanding their program nationwide around Ireland, Northern Ireland and Scotland. This involved a lot of analysis of potential ophthalmologists and optometrists who would promote this service to their clients. I advocated, marketed, and met with those who have had a positive impact on their life due to the counselling.
What did you find most challenging about your internship? The most challenging thing I found is that Irish workplace is very relaxed. From previous internships, I’ve been used to a structured workplace with strict schedules and deadlines. Switching my mindset from hard deadlines to a laid-back environment was a challenge for me. Once I accepted that it was not wrong but different, I was able to adjust well.
What advice do you have for other students that are also considering interning abroad? Explore your options! Go to information sessions and find what interests you. Also look into scholarships for studying abroad. I never thought studying/interning abroad would have been an option for me due to financial constraints, but as I looked more into different scholarships and financial aid I realized it was a possibility for me. Interning abroad has been an incredible experience and it’s something practical I can take with me as I look for jobs back home.
How did Eller (or your previous coursework) prepare you for your internship. Eller prepares you for the workforce from your first class all the way until you graduate. One class I that helped me at this internship was BNAD 277. My boss was very impressed that I knew how to run statistical analysis using Excel. Not only did it set me apart from previous interns, it also saved the time it would have taken to train me to use that part of Excel.