The Value of International Internships

The value of international internships is indisputable as an international internship is the first step in making yourself a competitive candidate in the global job market.  When you start your search for your first career, you’ll be competing with young professionals from around the world.

Participating in an international internship provides you with the skills to communicate effectively with people from different cultures, understand different work cultures and routines, and in the case of a virtual internship, get a leg up in being successful and impactful while working remotely. When it’s time to show off that resume, you can speak to the variety of skills you learned as well as these distinctive qualities that will set you apart from your peers.

International Virtual Internships Offer Valuable Career Growth

Until recently, most students had to travel overseas or study abroad in order to take advantage of an international internship. With USAC’s new international virtual internship opportunities, you can gain all of these skills and more without having to travel.

If you’re asking yourself how on earth you’ll be able to immerse in a new culture through a virtual internship, we understand. That’s why we reached out to one of the international companies offering virtual internship placements through USAC. We wanted to hear first hand the types of projects students can expect to work on, why having an American intern is valuable for an international company, and whether an international virtual internship offers the same results as an in-person internship.

An International Company on the Value of International Internships

Company: The Italian Planners
Company description: An event planning company ranging in celebrations from weddings and dinner parties to destination experiences and fundraising galas.
Interviewee: Claudia Fanini, CEO and founder

Why is a having an American intern valuable to your company?

Having an intern that is from America allows me to better understand how to communicate with my American audience. The U.S. market is very important to us and having an American intern helps us find and create interesting content ideas and topics that will catch foreigners’ attention.

For instance, when we talk about destinations, it is useful to have someone on the team that can provide insight into how visitors from the U.S. perceive the most well-known regions and cities in Italy. Recently, my intern was asking if Venice is really worth a visit or if it’s just a tourist trap. This is a very hot topic among foreigners, so I did my best to explain from a native’s perspective what makes Venice so special. From there, my intern and I can work together to create content that helps other visitors see Venice as more than just a tourist destination.

I’ve also found it very beneficial to have an American intern that can help me better understand the expectations of Americans when it comes to event venues, as this might differ from Italian culture.

On a typical day, what types of projects does a virtual intern work on for you and how do you organize projects and communicate with your intern?

Our current intern is working heavily on digital marketing efforts because that is his interest. We have the flexibility to tailor our internship program to fit the intern’s desired skills they’re looking to learn.

For project organization and assignment, I use a project management tool called Asana. Every Monday, weekly goals are set and monitored in Asana, where the intern uploads his work for review. I’ve structured the work into two-week timelines including tasks related to strategy, keywords, copywriting, SEO, social media, Adword campaigns, and sales generation. This allows the intern to gain a clear understanding of all of the steps involved with a digital marketing campaign.

In addition, we have three calls a week and daily communication on Slack to make sure we are aligned with the progress of each project. Of course, I provide continual feedback, corrections, and take advantage of any opportunity to enhance his skillset.

During our phone calls we have an open conversation, exchange ideas, and I make sure that he understands my expectations on upcoming projects. Whenever possible, I will provide him with digital access to paid and free software to make his experience more meaningful and relevant.

In today’s market, how can an international internship help a student stand out?

An international internship is fundamental in becoming open-minded, flexible, and to gain an international approach to dealing with different cultures and people. I try to frequently talk with my intern not only about job tasks but about Italian customs and habits. This will help him understand how things are done differently in another country, which is a big value of an international internship over a domestic internship.

Through these discussions along with sharing pictures of local places, restaurants and food, I provide a “local virtual experience.” I’m continually telling him what Italian’s eat and what we drink, how we cook and about our traditions. As these are all things he would learn if he were physically here in our offices.

Sometimes we take for granted that we know what our customers needs and expectations are, but there is always more to learn about your audience. For us, this is especially true about our American audience and their perception of Italian culture.

Having an American intern has added a personal touch to our digital marketing, provided a different perspective for the company and has enabled us to get more work done for our global customer base.

Gain the Benefits of an International Internship from Home

You no longer have to travel across the world to gain the value of international internships. Get international experience and enhance your professional skills and knowledge with a virtual internship. USAC is offering the opportunity to gain experience in the following fields and responsibilities in locations across the world.


Digital marketing and social media management

Digital marketing and social media management positions may include, but are not limited, to the following work responsibilities:

  • Analysis and evaluation of digital presence
  • Social media account management
  • SEO analysis and development
  • ORM strategy development
  • Web editing and design
  • Digital platform content creation
  • Market research
  • Campaign development and promotion
  • Marketing campaign analysis
  • Editorial strategy development
  • Copy editing
  • Graphic communications development
  • Video production
  • Multimedia projects
  • Digital Storytelling

Placements available in Brazil, China, Czech Republic, India, Italy, Spain, Thailand, and Uruguay


Business

Business positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Executive assistance
  • Strategy meeting attendance and participation
  • Liaising with clients, vendors, and suppliers
  • Sales performance review
  • Process analysis and improvement
  • Business intelligence gathering
  • Policy development
  • Business development
  • Workshop organization and presentation
  • Project management
  • Business/Financial plan development
  • Quantitative data analysis
  • Strategic partnerships
  • Market research
  • Consulting
  • Survey development and analysis
  • Event planning

Placements available in Brazil, China, Czech Republic, India, Italy, Spain, Thailand, and Uruguay


Engineering

Engineering positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Novel design concept prototyping
  • Material property evaluation
  • Material selection and design
  • Test samples creation and testing plan execution
  • Failure analysis
  • Data analysis, summarization, and presentation
  • Modeling and control techniques of atomic force microscope
  • Modeling, identification, and control of thermal systems
  • Control of Robotino
  • Control systems, systems identification, and signal processing
  • Kalman filtering (linear quadratic estimation)
  • Technical writing

Placements available in Germany and Brazil


Translation

Translation positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Translation of marketing materials
  • Translation of video content
  • Translation of internal documents
  • Translation of sample sentences and grammar points
  • Translation of web pages
  • Captioning

Advanced language proficiency is required.

Placements available in Brazil, China, and Spain


Social welfare

Social welfare positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Research projects
  • Video projects
  • Project planning and management
  • Liaising with community partners
  • Grant-writing and crowd funding
  • Program development
  • Social enterprise advisement
  • Activities organization
  • SWOT analysis
  • Administrative assistance
  • Report writing and case study development

Placements available in India, Thailand, and Uruguay


English language instruction

English language instruction positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Lesson planning
  • Curriculum and materials development
  • Online teaching
  • Group and individual tutoring
  • Workshop presentations
  • Professional vocabulary development
  • Pitch training
  • Conversation classes and workshops
  • Holistic communication strategies development
  • Creating supportive learning environments
  • Adult language education
  • Vocational language education
  • Early childhood language education
  • Language education research
  • Teaching assistant

Placements available in Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Italy, Thailand, and Uruguay


Journalism

Journalism positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Content development
  • News reporting
  • Interviewing
  • Media partner monitoring
  • Content research
  • New media/multimedia development
  • Web content development
  • Proofreading
  • Media content promotion
  • Content editing
  • Social media content development and management

Placements available in China, Czech Republic, and France


Grant-Writing/Crowd Funding

Grant-writing/Crowd Funding positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Prospect research
  • Application development
  • Exploring crowd funding platforms
  • Funding campaign management
  • Research projects
  • Financial report management
  • New donor research
  • Legal compliance
  • Liaise with potential partners/donors

Placements available in Czech Republic


Research

Research positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Research assistance
  • Proofreading and editing
  • Summarize relevant research materials
  • Research promotion
  • Comparative analysis
  • Gather, record, transcribe, and digitize documents
  • Edit and proofread translations
  • Collect data
  • Compile notes

Placements available in Czech Republic, Italy, and Thailand


Health/Wellness

Health and wellness positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Research
  • Preparing learning materials
  • Campaign promotion
  • Developing promotional materials
  • Data collection
  • Public health awareness campaign participation
  • Social media management

Placements available in Italy and Thailand


Computer Science/IT

Computer science positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Design, coding, unit testing and documentation of software components and features
  • Build automation test framework
  • Work with the software engineering team
  • Participate in sprint planning, demos and daily scrum activities
  • Work with C++/C# programming, Java, HTML5, and JavaScript
  • User interface design
  • Technical writing
  • Create project dashboards
  • Process documentation

Placements available in India


Graphic Design/3-D Modelling

Graphic design/3-D Modelling positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Prepare materials to coincide with social media and blog posts
  • Assist with website and blog updates
  • Assist with collateral updates and version control
  • Creation of logos for various products
  • Creation and updates to various sales collateral
  • Assist with video production and editing
  • Work with Adobe Creative Suite, Sketchup, and other 3-D modelling software
  • 3-D rendering and design
  • Create graphic database

Placements available in India and Italy


Human Resources

Human resources positions may include, but are not limited to, the following work responsibilities:

  • Employee recruitment
  • Assist with recruiting, testing, and interview processes
  • Develop goal setting and assessment metrics
  • Assist with implementation of employee benefits programs and engagement activities
  • Preparing, updating, and recommending human resource policies and procedures
  • Records maintenance

Placements available in India