Tackling Life As Intern Abroad: What To Expect

By Chelsea Evara| September 15, 2015

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What To Expect When Interning Abroad

You’re about to start a new internship, but have you spent so much time focusing on your new job that you completely forgot to think about the challenges you’ll face moving to a new place?

You have to pack up your life and move to the unknown. You’re going to be away from everything and everyone you know, and for some interns who intern abroad, you may even have a whole new culture and language to tackle.

But what are some of the biggest problems past interns faced when they moved abroad for their internship? We spoke to some interns who have been there and done that to get you the inside scoop. Read on to see what they found most challenging when they got on a plane and left their familiar surroundings for an internship. Some of them might surprise you…

challenges moving for your internship: packing

  1. Packing my life into two suitcases! I interned from August to December, so I needed clothes for both a hot summer and a cold winter!
  2. Being away from family.
  3. Adjusting to different lifestyles. I interned in Barcelona, where the food was very different and they eat dinner later at night (around 9 or 10 pm).
  4. Being flexible and quickly adapting to new my surroundings and new people.
  5. Living on a tight budget!
  6. I interned in France to improve my French, but the language barrier was a struggle. I had a good level of French but my confidence was knocked when people couldn’t understand me.
  7. A real test interning abroad was adapting to the local creepy crawlies!
  8. Dealing with homesickness.
  9. Learning to cook.
  10. Living with other interns from different colleges. They were so different to the people I went to school with.

Although these interns faced some big challenges adjusting to life overseas, they wouldn’t change their experiences for anything. They all said their time interning abroad was one of their best experiences to date, where they met amazing people and made great memories.

Some of their advice to interns like you was to make sure you make the most of your time by doing everything and anything you possibly can. Some of things they couldn’t have lived without were their photos, electronic devices to keep in contact with their family and friends, and comfort food for those days when they were missing home a little too much.

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