Who chooses to be an intern, and why do they do it? The assumption is that interns are college students in the middle of their studies, looking to get some work experience, or people who have just graduated looking for a foot in the door, but this is not necessarily the case. Coming to Israel on an internship programme has shown me that this stereotype is not what interning is about. The variety of people on the programme that I am currently on, range from the stereotypical college students, to thirty year olds looking for a career break or looking to try something new.
Working for free is extremely daunting for anyone, but what I am now beginning to understand, is that interning is a two way street, both for the employer and the intern. I chose to come to Israel with the ‘Oranim’ five month internship programme. For me, coming to Israel was for a “productive” break. At 23 years old, I had spent the last 4 years studying, so with an undergraduate degree, a Masters degree, and 9 months of being in a job, I wanted some time out to live and work in a different country. This, I hoped, would give me a new perspective to the working life I was about to endure it for the rest of my life! I started out on my Israeli internship with a focus that is completely different to where I currently am.
I came to Israel wanting to feel as if I had helped someone, so I focused my “internship” around working with under privileged children. Unfortunately, my internship advisor couldn’t find anything to fit what I was looking for, so suggested I take a different approach. On reflection, this was possibly the best things that could have happened to me. My first interview was for a company called Rounds
. It was love at first sight.
The company had everything I was looking for in order to change my perspective on interning and working in Israel. The internship that was set out was structured, yet had the ability for me to be creative, which was something I was desperately looking for. Having worked in the UK for several years, the working lifestyle is extremely different to that in Israel. The working day itself is different, the environment is more relaxed and vibrant, and everyone works as a team.