Testimonials

International students and program participants share their experiences with Connect-123ís internship, volunteer and study abroad programs. Whether through programs in Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Dublin or Shanghai, each international program participant has a unique story to share. Take a look and see what Connect-123ís international students, volunteers or interns have to say! Connect-123ís blog also has great international study, volunteer and travel advice! Scroll down to view all testimonials - or filter by destination, opportunity or both.

Vivian Asonye

Vivian Asonye

Human Rights Intern
University of Texas, Dallas
05 August 2014

I was given the opportunity to intern in Dublin this summer, and I can honestly say it was the experience of a lifetime. Everything about living in Dublin was refreshing and exciting, and I wouldn’t trade this experience for the world. Not only did I stay in a safe, if not a tad bit distant area from the city centre of Dublin, but my accommodations were also extremely clean and accommodating. Dublin is a perfect place to visit, especially if you’d like to visit other European countries while you’re here.

I interned for a non-profit and worked directly under their Migrant Family Support Service coordinator.  I really enjoyed my time there. All of my coworkers and supervisors were energetic and made work fun. My favorite thing about working in Dublin is that although you are expected to work hard, you are also free to play hard too.

The city is extremely beautiful, and the night life is unreal. I spent the nights dancing away, having a couple of pints, and meeting locals and other international visitors. Everyone I met seemed to be so excited to meet me and help me out in any way that they could. The food in this city is literally off the charts, so please budget money to pig out.

Lastly, Connect 123 was a prime choice in internship coordinators, so at the end of the day I am really glad that I chose them. They made sure that I was safe and tried to make my time in Dublin as comfortable and fun as possible. My only recommendation for future interns is that they should budget their money accordingly, and make sure to bring money for transportation, night life, and any emergency that may happen. I hope you enjoy Dublin. Cheers!

Kate Flanagan

Kate Flanagan

Medical Intern
UT Dallas
04 August 2014

When I signed up for Connect-123's Dublin internship program I had never traveled abroad before, much less lived and worked abroad for 8 weeks. I had always wanted to visit Ireland and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to do so while getting some work experience at the same time. But I was worried--about navigating a foreign country, about not knowing any of the people traveling with me, and about whether my internship would be a good fit. Facing those fears led to some of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

As a neuroscience student interested in a research career, I was seeking placement in a lab where I could learn some new lab procedures and practice my scientific writing skills. Connect-123 found me a great internship at a neuroimmunology research lab. My coworkers were friendly, my work was interesting, there was always something to do, and I gained an understanding of the subject matter that supplemented and strengthened what I'd learned in my classes. Outside the lab, I found myself exploring Dublin and the rest of the country both on my own and with the new friends I made in the Connect-123 program. I've come back feeling more confident in myself, more useful in the lab, and more cognizant of the world outside the US.

Erica Moser

Erica Moser

Marketing Intern
Northeastern University
30 July 2014

Doing a five-month internship in Cape Town was one of the best decisions of my life. Admittedly, when I first decided to go abroad, Cape Town wasn’t on my radar; I was considering London or Australia. But I knew a Connect-123 participant in Cape Town at the time, and between a brief email conversation and looking through her photos on Facebook, I was sold. Both of the people from Connect who helped me were incredibly helpful, clear and fast at responding to emails.

Though I am studying journalism, I wanted to try something different and ended up at a word-of-mouth marketing agency. It was a great fit. I created content plans for our clients’ Facebook pages, made survey calls, input statistics for feedback reports, helped brainstorm ideas for campaigns, learned about social media analytics tools, and found influencers ranging from fashionistas to foodies. I learned a lot and they kept me busy, making me feel a part of the team. Overall, Connect made things very easy. Since I was already stressed about my visa application, flight plans and more, it was so reassuring to be able to move into an apartment that already had furniture, bed lines and towels, and kitchenware provided. I also took advantage of several of the excursions and activities they planned, such as Boulders Beach (penguins!), Cape Point, and Cape of Good Hope; wine tasting in Constantia; and Seal Island.

Outside of Connect, some of my other activities included hiking Lion’s Head and numerous trails on Table Mountain, skydiving, paragliding, sand boarding, visiting Robben Island, doing a safari at a game lodge, learning yoga, volunteering with children from the townships, volunteering at the Oranjezicht City Farm Saturday market, eating copious amounts of meat at braais, and doing a road trip along the Garden Route. So if you’re reading this and considering going to Cape Town, absolutely do it, and have some biltong and a Savanna Dry for me!

Ashley Riog

Ashley Riog

Nursing Intern
Northeastern University
30 July 2014

Before my arrival to Buenos Aires, I was extremely nervous (anyone would be!). I spoke little Spanish and knew no one in Argentina. Upon meeting my Connect-123 advisor, all those nervous feelings melted away! She made me feel completely comfortable and told me to embrace the city. I am a fourth year nursing major in Boston so I wanted a volunteer experience that would place me back into healthcare, and she found me the perfect internships. I worked in two different hospitals, each providing a different view on healthcare. The first was a public hospital with few resources, but the nurses welcomed me and taught me everything they knew. The second hospital was also public, but resembled something from the United States! Here, it was the doctors who took me under their wing to observe surgeries, assist gynecologists, and rotate throughout the hospital.

Overall, I believe my experience in Buenos Aires really opened my eyes to both the beauty of healthcare, and that of Buenos Aires’ amazing porteño culture. Not only were my healthcare skills sharpened, but I returned to the States with my Spanish much improved and waiting for my chance to go back!

Kai Cortright

Kai Cortright

Biomedical Engineering Intern
University of Michigan
29 July 2014

I’ve really enjoyed my time in Dublin with Connect-123. I had the idea a year ago to try and combine an experience abroad with an internship, and I couldn’t be more glad that I did. Connect-123 really helped me along the way, since I had no idea where to start looking for internships in Dublin. They were really quick and efficient in their communication, and they were able to find me a position as a research assistant. My 3 months here were amazing, and I learned so much in my field of study and gained a lot of valuable experience. When you have an internship abroad you really get to meet a lot of locals in the workplace, which is a great way to become exposed to a country’s culture. If you’re thinking of doing an internship abroad, definitely contact Connect-123 with any inquiries. One thing I really liked about Connect-123 was they try to give the interns a chance to socialize among themselves by organizing events every week, but you also have the liberty to venture on your own; there’s no pressure one way or another. These past 3 months have absolutely flown by...I’m already planning another trip to come back!

 

Abril Contreras

Abril Contreras

Tourism & Event Management Intern
University of Southern California
26 July 2014

Now 2 months after my internship, I am so happy to have chosen Barcelona as the place to live and work in. I interned for a tourism company and my job was to find new unique activities for people that visit Barcelona outside of the regular touristy things. It was awesome! I had the opportunity to try out some of these activities, my favorite one being the segway tour in the mountains. I also had the opportunity to work on my marketing skills such as blogs, social media and corporate presentations.  Connect-123 was great not only at finding me an awesome internship but also meeting other people who were interning in Barcelona as well. I met a lot of people and had the chance to get to explore Barcelona and other places with them. I am so happy so have taken the chance to build my resume and live in such an amazing city. Barcelona is so lively and there is always something to see and do.