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Benefits of an international internship: What’s different?

Internships are a pivotal moment in everyone’s life. They are often your first encounter with a professional environment, where you come across the pressure of deadlines, meetings and interactions with different people from diverse backgrounds. You must choose carefully; this will not define the rest of your professional career, but it is an excellent jumpstart to it.

Even the great Steve Jobs was an intern at the beginning – he did a summer internship with Hewlett-Packard and met his co-founding Apple partner Steve Wozniak there. Not bad, right?

So, why not treat this as a new adventure and make the most of it?

It is natural to think about doing an internship with an organisation that is geographically close to you as they are often the organisations you would have been exposed to. It is a fact that times have changed and the world is becoming more and more global with every passing moment. Why not treat our professional practice as a chance to travel and see how other cultures get things done?

According to William Nolting and his team at NAFSA, an international internship is defined as: “A short-term (one month to one year) work experience with an organization abroad that allows participants to apply theoretical classroom knowledge in a real-world setting, and gain a better understanding of a given field in a global context.” 

Somewhere in the world, opportunities are around the corner for someone like you. There are internship program providers like us, who can help you find where you would like to go and secure an internship there. 

The most significant barriers to interning abroad, after cost, tend to be the ability to secure an internship and the right visa.

By going through a provider like Capital Placement, you can secure the right type of internship for you, since providers tend to have an extensive range of opportunities and employers you can choose from. They also offer support with documentation, including editing your CV to meet the local standards and helping you through the process of obtaining the correct visa.

Generally, providers like Capital Placement also take care of often overlooked things, like helping you adjust to the new country, introducing you to a support network of staff and other interns, finding furnished accommodation, and sourcing small things like SIM cards, travel cards, etc., This means you’ll have more time to focus your efforts on your internship and enjoying your time in the country. 

There are many differences between international and domestic internships, but here are some reasons why international internships offer you so much more:

1. It Gets You Outside Of Your Comfort Zone

When you intern domestically, your experience in the workplace can pass as regular working hours, so that after you get off work, your life continues with the same old routine you’ve followed for years. However, if you decide to intern internationally, you will be exposed to other cultures, ways of communicating and points of view that can be completely different from the ones you’ve encountered yourself at home. This can make your internship experience more intense but will open your eyes to the various problems and trends that companies around the world have. It will broaden your mind and make your internship as exciting as a new adventure, possibly putting you two steps ahead of your colleagues.

2. Expands Your Global Networking

You’ve made a vast network of like-minded peers, mentors and professors just by working and going to school in your home country. Now consider developing a similar network, only in a completely different place! Interning abroad will allow you to create a community of international colleagues and professionals that you can reach out to in the years to come.

3. It Grows Your Global Understanding

When choosing a possible international internship, you need to think about your career goals and how you can project yourself as a professional with a global outreach. A law student may prefer to learn the ropes of their own legal system before going abroad to an internship, whereas an economics student might want to learn more about the stock market in world capital like London, while a tech student might want to go to the new “Silicon Valley” in Bangalore where applications are being made for worldwide use every day.

4. It’s Exciting

It is a fact that the happier we are, the better our life goes in all rubrics – and who would not be happy to travel and work overseas? It can be for a short period, like a month, or as long as a year. You’ll meet new people practically every day, and there will always be things to visit or get acquainted with after you leave the office. It may be exhausting at first – but rest assured, you’ll always be excited to go to work.

5. Destinations

The world is yours to choose from. There are many opportunities to do internships internationally. Here are a few examples:

  • London is the home of the most critical European tech hubs, known as the “Tech City”, where you can find influences from different cultures and backgrounds, come together. This is an excellent location because you’ll be thrown into an environment that is always on the go. No two days will ever be the same in this capital. Additionally, there are lots of start-ups, medium-sized and corporate agencies in Finance, Design and Commerce, so you’ll find something you’re passionate to do.

  • For finance students, there is a variety of countries you can choose from to build a dynamic résumé, including London, Mumbai or Bangalore. These destinations are promising because you’ll be in a continually evolving stage. A finance internship abroad does not only teach interns about the basics in finance but also helps them develop a global perspective and flexibility to succeed in today’s swift finance world. 

  • There are also opportunities for business developers and marketers. That is one of the most popular and global careers in the world. Companies are always looking to expand across the globe. Since business marketing demand is still on the rise, you can choose from many countries and opportunities, including internships in developing countries like India. Also, you can take part in projects in world capitals like New York and London.

Overall Benefits

  • Helps you develop sufficient communication skill in different environments through meeting new people. 
  • Tests your problem-solving capabilities and flexibility to overcome new challenges and uncertainties.
  • Makes you aware of global trends and issues, giving you the tools to become a global citizen.
  • Helps you discover yourself, stand by your beliefs and values, making you more self-aware of your identity.
  • Provides an opportunity to improve your negotiation skills, since some of these destinations see haggle as part of daily life. 
  • Introduces you to different ideas, processes and work habits that you can take back to apply in your home country.
  • Enables you to build a global network to spread your wings throughout the world.
  • Adds a unique point to your CV to help you stand out from the rest.
  • Provides an opportunity to learn and develop language skills.
  • Gives you an advantage over other candidates, since employers are actively looking for candidates with international experience, to help with interacting with people abroad (whether suppliers, partners or customers).

Final Thoughts

If the opportunity to do an international internship comes along, do not hesitate to take it over a domestic one. There are many options you can choose from. Some are even paid and include benefits like accommodation and travel. An international internship would be an asset to your professional background and help you develop abilities that will give you a global outlook and reach.

As you can see, there are many benefits to interning abroad, including experiencing different cultures, work environments, trends and customs, as well as making new friends. This will make you a more confident professional after you go back home. You might even love the place and decide to get a job there after graduating!

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    Capital Placement

    Capital Placement offering global internship programmes for students and recent graduates since 2012 with one of our 1500+ partner companies across 25+ industries.

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