A part of my academic experience here in Jordan is to intern at a local organization. This has been the most difficult academic part of this journey. I’ll walk you through the steps I had to take in this internship process:
What do I want to intern in?
The focus of internships in this program is to conduct research while interning. This research will be of close relation to the internship site that I choose. Therefore, it is important that I choose an internship site and topic that I am interested in.
When I arrived, the academic director made it clear that our internships can be pre-decided topics but to be open to be inspired by topics discussed in class. The School for International Training in Amman is structured as such that our speakers are persons of influence within the country. Some of our speakers worked with the UN, were Minsters of the state, peace negotiators, or economists. Therefore, through their connections it would be made possible for the students within the program to be exposed to the perspectives of influential people in the region, and then work with those same people.
Amidst this process it became difficult to decide what exactly I was interested, which part of this course seemed the most interesting to spend four weeks interning and researching on.
I first thought I would want to intern with the International Organization for Migration. I had done research on this organization earlier in the year. Upon hearing that they had an office here I was excited about the prospect of interning there.
The Let Down….
I took the first couple of weeks to call and e-mail them, in hopes of securing a position. However, this process warned me that very few organizations want an intern for only a month. It was upon this realization that I gave up.
I was disappointed and began to reevaluate what exactly I wanted. I knew that through the course of the academic semester I had developed an interest in economic development. With that in mind, it probably would not have been the best opportunity for my interests to intern with the International Organization for Migration.
A Silver Lining…
Prior to the beginning of the internship period, we must submit a request to do an internship, outlining what our goals are, and how research will be conducted during the internship period. I became anxious because I still had yet to solidify an internship.
When I brought these concerns to my Academic Director, he informed me that we still have one more speaker who will be coming and this speaker is an economist who also has an economic consulting firm. He agreed to take me on as an intern after my academic director called him and I emailed him my resume.
In the beginning I only wanted to intern with the International Organization for Migration. I have realized my desire had had more to do with wanting to add accredited work experience to my resume than my fascination with the organization. However, in this time I think it is best to intern in something that I am not as familiar with, but still interested, rather than something that is well known.