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Professional Confessional

A blog providing tips and resources for life after college

2014 July

Diary of an Intern: Charles’ Self-Discovery & Reflection – Part 2

Congratulations to our Diary of an Intern series’ student blog contributor, Charles Thomas! He completed his summer internship. Charles’ final posts are reflections on self discovery and experience as an intern. Charles will share what he learned about himself and the skills developed during the internship. Read his reflection in a 2-part series – Diary of an Intern: Self Discovery and Reflection.

Let’s read what Charles learned from others and the advice he gives to future interns, especially when interning internationally.  Great new perspective and fantastic advice!

Now that I have finished interning for the Royal Geographical Society – Hong Kong (RGS-HK), my next step is ensuring that I apply what I learned.  What I found to be perhaps the most influential aspect of my internship was the way in which it shaped my perspective.  First, spending time abroad in almost any capacity means exposure to different cultures and ways of life.  Because Hong Kong has such a pronounced international influence, I had the opportunity to form relationships with not only people native to Hong Kong, but ex-patriots from a wide variety of nationalities.  Furthermore, interning with RGS-HK, an organization designed to accentuate geographical phenomena across the globe, demonstrated to me that there are more ways to lead one’s life than I had previously considered.  For example, the guest speakers I met ranged from geopolitical analysts to professional mountaineers.  What each of them seemed to share was an ability to make the most of the hand they were dealt.  In relation to my own future, I learned that I do not need to know every detail of the path I want to follow, as long as I can recognize and seize the opportunities that come my way.  If I had to offer any advice to future interns, I would suggest hitting the ground running.  First impressions are important and if you prove yourself right away, you may set the tone for a much more valuable internship experience than you would have otherwise.  This is especially important for American students.  Internationally, some people have the perception that American students are unfocused and lazy—prove them wrong.

Charles Thomas ’16 – Politics and International Affairs major, Communication and Entrepreneurship double minor

 

 

Diary of an Intern: Charles’ Self-Discovery & Reflection – Part 1

Congratulations to our Diary of an Intern series’ student blog contributor, Charles Thomas! He completed his summer internship. Charles’ final posts are reflections on self discovery and experience as an intern. Charles will share what he learned about himself and the skills developed during the internship. Read his reflection in a 2-part series – Diary of an Intern: Self Discovery and Reflection.

Let’s learn what Charles discovered about himself and the experience at the Royal Geographical Society in Hong Kong.

Shutting down the computer for the last time.

Shutting down the computer for the last time.

My time as an intern for the Royal Geographical Society – Hong Kong afforded me an incredible range of experiences from which to learn.  While in the office, the projects I completed offered me experience with drafting, editing, and condensing various documents.  Through these assignments, I not only honed my prior writing ability, but I learned new skills, such as how to produce an executive summary report.  I also sat in on meetings with the RGS-HK Director, during which he formed relationships with prospective individual and corporate sponsors.  After these meetings, the RGS-HK Director often explained to me why he did or said certain things and he would sometimes ask my perspective and challenge me to defend it.  Additionally, the RGS-HK Events Officer brought me with her to school outreach programs, where we ensured that each event ran smoothly and evaluated the events, providing feedback to RGS-HK on how to improve future school outreach programs.  Similarly, I was involved in the evening lecture events as well, which RGS-HK hosted for members and guests of members.  The most recent lecture, for example, featured an analysis of how China and Japan’s involvement in World War II continues to shape the political climate in the Eastern world.  Among other tasks, I was responsible for taking notes on these lectures for future reference. What was particularly enthralling about my internship was that, while I spent most of my time working on internal operations, I also had exposure to the output of our work in the office, through attending evening lectures, school outreach programs, field trips, and interacting with members.  Interning with RGS-HK was an incredible opportunity and I am excited to see how what I learned there will shape my life in the future. 
 

Charles Thomas ’16 – Politics and International Affairs major, Communication and Entrepreneurship double minor