From Tenerife to New York City
One year ago, Paula decided to go for an internship to the US – and now she is still there! Her internship in media and project development was so successful that she extended it for another 6 month. It is an "investment in the future", great attitude Paula, and a lot of fun during your next 6 month of internship!
The beginning of my love story with N.Y.
My name is Paula and I am from Tenerife, Spain. My love story with New York started back in 2009 when I had the opportunity to study English in this city for a month. Ever since, my dream has been to come back to New York for a longer period of time and experience what it is like to live in the greatest city in the world.
Last year I contacted Studentsgoabroad, determined to find aninternship in New York. They've been very helpful from the very beginning, guiding me through all the processes, which are more complicated and expensive than expected and answering all questions (in my case like hundreds of thousands) in less than 24 hours.
Soon after joining the program, I had two successful interviews with companies in the USA and I decided to go for the internship in NY where I would work as an assistant in the field Media Relations and Project Development. Initially, I was supposed to do the internship for 12 months but I had the possibility to extend my stay for another 6 months.
Preparation or ‘Drowning in Paperwork’
Take a deep breath! It's going to be okay and I promise, it is worth it. The best advice I can give for the preparation, is to be patient (I received my Visa one day before flying to New York) and to stay super organized (you are going to face a pile of papers).
Coming to the States means a lot of paperwork and it's really important to be organized and have all the paperwork under control. Make copies of everything (print, scan, save) and keep track of all the processes that you have to do and the fees that you have to pay along the way, as for paperwork before arrival, during the stay and for the departure papers. Don’t forget that there are additional fees for the visa application that have to be paid which are not included in the program fee. I know, it's a lot of money but think of it as an investment.
Where to live in New York?
This was not my first stay abroad and the first thing I do before my departures, is to connect with people that are already living in the city. Usually, I post a message on ‘Couchsurfing.com’ or in groups on Facebook, such as ‘Spanish in New York’, ‘International Students in New York’, and there are much more.
It was through couch surfing, that I met my current friend and roommate Aviva. She got back to my message with so many tips and recommendations and after many emails and Skype sessions, we decided to move together once I got to New York.
My internship – don't be afraid to ask and propose new ideas!
Initially, I wasn't really sure what I was going to do in the company and which kind of internship it was going to be. However, I decided to go to my first day with an open mind, ready to show them that they made the right decision.
After a week, I was 100% acclimated to the company and from week to week, they would give me more and more responsibilities. Nowadays, I work hand in hand with one of our clients and I manage a little team.
One thing that I've learned from American companies, which I really like, it is that they give you free rein to create and grow. They always ask for my opinion and even let me develop any project or idea that I have, giving me all the resources and support needed.
During my stay, I've learned a lot. It's been a continuous learning process and I have developed and grown tremendously. Don't be afraid to ask and propose new ideas!