Deltasigs Abroad: What It's Like to Intern Internationally

Jan 17, 2019 – Deltasigs Nicole Herget and Ryan Ward share their experiences with Deltasig partner IES Internships.

As a Deltasig, you understand the importance of professional experience well before you enter the workforce full-time. You might also know that getting an internship abroad is even better. Read responses from two brothers who participated in full-time internships in Milan and Cape Town with Delta Sigma Pi partner, IES internships, and how their experiences earned them skills and perspective to get ahead in their job markets.Nicole Herget

Meet our Deltasig Interns:

Nicole Herget: 
Nicole is from Waynesboro, Virginia, and is an Entrepreneurial Managementmajor at the University of Rhode Island. During her summer internship in Milan, Nicole interned with Spallanzani Jewelry, saying, "It put me light years ahead of other students who haven't had the opportunity to intern." 

Ryan Ward: Ryan is from Indianapolis and attends Bellarmine University in Louisville,Cape Town_Cape Town_1_Ryan Ward_IPSU18_DSP (1) Kentucky, where he majors in Business Administration and MusicPerformance. He participated in the Cape Town Summer Internship Program, where he interned with the Baxter Theatre Centre. Ryan credits his IES internship, Bellarmine and Delta Sigm aPi for helping him secure his current internship with the Kentucky Opera. 

Q: Of the 15 global IES Internships locations, how did you choose yours? 

Nicole: I chose Milan because I always wanted to visit Italy. I was looking to get into luxury products and services and I knew Milan was the place for me. As I walked to work every day, I passed brands like Gucci, Versace, Valentino, Louis Vuitton and Dolce & Gabbana. I was immersed in a culture in which I could learn from. 

Ryan: I remember hearing all my friends talk about how they studied abroad in Europe, Asia, or Central/South America, yet I never heard anyone talk about Africa. Realizing this was a unique opportunity, I went for it. 

Q: IES Internships matches you with an internship placement based on your interests. Can you explain how this worked for you?

Nicole: My placement process was amazing. I connected with [Milan IES Internship Coordinator] Laura Carrera (amazing mentor throughout the whole process). I sent her my résumé, and we set up a time to do a Skype call. We talked about my goals and expectations for the upcoming summer and following this was a mini "mock interview." She wrote me back with the amazing news that Spallanzani had shown interest in my résumé. I interviewed and got a great sense for the people in Spallanzani's company. I talked about what I wanted to get out of the internship, and they told me what they expected from a potential intern. We meshed very well and ended the Skype call on a high note; they offered me the position at the end of the call. With bundles of excitement, I had an internship in Italy. 

Ryan: I would have Skype meetings with the Internship Coordinator in Cape Town. One meeting, she asked me what my career goals were and from there, she helped place me in the most prestigious performing arts center in South Africa by way of most awards won, the Baxter Theatre Centre. 

Q: What did you like most about spending your summer interning in this new city?

Nicole: The thing I liked most about spending my summer in Italy was the work I was doing. My company trusted me a lot and this made work very enjoyable. 

Ryan: I met so many neat people, from locals to friends from America with whom I studied in Cape Town. I learned and experienced s much and traveled to many places in South Africa. I loved it all! 

Q: How did your IES internship relate to what you'd like to do in the future on your intended career path? 

Nicole: My internship related to what I wanted to do in the future because I enjoy, and see myself working in, luxury goods. Working at Spallanzani exposed me to the luxury side of jewelry. I would love to be involved in luxury jewelry here in the United States and this internship made me stand out from many other candidates. 

Ryan: I was placed in the most prestigious performing arts center in South Africa, the Baxter Theatre Centre. Being a double major in Business Administration and Music: Vocal Performance, I have realized that my ideal career is to work in performing arts administration. Because of IES Internships, Delta Sigma Pi, my education at Bellarmine University, and my experience at the Baxter Theatre Centre, I am currently the Arts Administrative Intern at Kentucky Opera. 

Q: Was there anything that surprised you about your IES internship? 

Nicole: One of the biggest things that surprised me when I began my internship was how much my company trusted me with their work. I felt that, as an intern, I was treated like a normal employee and like a part of the team. Some of the things I did in my internship were very hands-on and I was given large tasks to complete. This was something that made me very happy because they trusted me to do substantial work from the beginning. 

Ryan: What surprised me about my internship was how relaxed the environment was. Everyone did exactly what they needed to do, but people often weren't stressed out doing it. 

Q: What skills did you acquire during your program?

Nicole: I think one of the best skills I learned was the skill of adaptability. You have to adapt when you go into another country, especially for work. I found that having a positive outlook and looking for every single option for opportunity made my experience one hundred times better. Being adaptable in a foreign country is a must. You must learn to be open to change and adaptable to anything your city might throw your way. 

Ryan: The skills I built during my program include database creation, organizational research skills, team collaboration, cross-cultural competency skills, and basic marketing skills. 

Q: Why would you recommend an IES internship to other Deltasigs?

Nicole: I would recommend IES Internships to anyone, especially Deltasigs. I think we joined Deltasigs to become a part of a brotherhood and also to advance in the business world any way we can. Through IES Internships, it will further your business resume and get you real world experience all while having THE BEST time of your life. 

Ryan: I recommend an IES internship to other Deltasigs because of how great the organization is. The staff is kind, hardworking, and really cares about your success and enjoyment of the program. There is a vast array of study abroad programs through IES Abroad, and they're one of the more well-known study abroad organizations. 
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