Real stories from real participants, parents and university partners who share their experiences as well as their advice. Learn more about the benefits Connect-123 interns and volunteers receive on our programs around the world!
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As a philosophy student planning to convert to law, I was keen to gain some professional experience in the field. I had struggled to find similar opportunities at home in the UK and was stuck in a sort of ‘Catch-22’ situation - to gain experience, experience was necessary. Connect-123 offered exactly what I was looking for! With their connections in Barcelona, they were able to offer me a two month internship at an immigration law firm. I have learnt so much in my time here and have been given a lot of responsibility, despite speaking hardly any Spanish. Additionally, Connect-123 has made the transition to living in a new country much easier. They have organized many social events and it has been easy to make friends with other interns in the city. I am grateful for the experience that Connect-123 enabled me to have, and the valuable first step it has given me in setting up my future career.Internships in Barcelona
First of all, thank you Connect-123 for allowing me to excel in a subject that I am very passionate about, in the most perfect city. Connect-123 gave me an incredible opportunity to complete an architecture internship abroad in Barcelona, Spain. This experience has not only aided me in my journey as a university student but has also molded me into a wiser, independent and engaged individual, allowing my personal and professional growth to blossom. This adventure has been an eye-opening and a memorable one. The frequent excursions held by Connect-123 were really successful in bringing the intern group closer, enabling us to learn more about each other. Being very fortunate to have met so many amazing individuals in Barcelona, I have had an incredible insight into many cultures, social habits and ways of living, not only from Spain but from all over the world. For example, spending much of my time with the interns from the US, I was continuously learning more about their background and history, even had the joy of celebrating the 4th of July with them at the Arc de Triomf in Barcelona. Being involved in such a challenging and demanding industry in this vibrant city put me at a great advantage. On my first day, I was already working to produce architectural plans for a client. As I progressed, I soon had to prepare architectural drawings which I discussed with the team in our project meetings. An incredible hands-on experience, I was able to be part of the design process, working on the initial drawings, to seeing the actual construction of the projects during our site visits. I am grateful to have contributed to the works of a range of buildings across Northern Spain, making this internship a truly invaluable experience.Internships in Barcelona
Ever since I was a little girl I was curious about everything and everyone around me. My curiosity continued to expand the older I got and my mom is the type of mom to always push me out of my comfort zone and experience new things in life. Those new things consisted of many things, from moving 10 hours away from home to attend university in a location I’ve never been to, to traveling overseas to Europe for the first time with my class in 2016. Ever since 2016 I haven't been able to get enough of Europe. My mom, yet again, pushed me back out of my comfort zone in 2017 and got me interested in doing my mandatory internship abroad! I didn’t know what to expect! I was so nervous but very excited because I thought, “do I want to stay in America and play it safe, or do I want to take a chance and it could be amazing”? So I went to Spain for the summer and met so many new life-long friends and a lovely homestay mother. My internship was an eye-opening experience to my future and who I wanted to become in life. Being overseas, away from home is an opportunity I wish everyone could experience. Being away from home in another country, in a different time zone made me realize; life flies by and you waste so much time living your life the way you think it should be lived, instead of living your life the way you want to live it. After my first internship I realized I needed more. I wanted to learn more in my industry and really get to the core of finding what I really want to do in life. Instead of just working back in Chicago for the summer of 2017 I decided to do another internship abroad. My mom then found Connect-123 and told me all about the program and I knew this was my second chance, another step closer to finding out what I wanted to do in life. Since the beginning Connect-123 has been nothing but friendly, helpful and understanding; it is the type of program that wants you to achieve, be successful and find exactly what you’re wanting. Because of Connect-123, I’ve gotten closer to reaching my goal. Through Connect-123 I’ve gained a new amount of confidence, memories, amazing new life-long friends and connections. Choosing Barcelona for an internship and joining the Connect-123 family is something I highly encourage and recommend to all my young curious friends out there. Do an internship overseas, do something that takes you out of your comfort zone, do something that simultaneously scares you a little bit but excites you at the same time. It’s so worth it and it does wonders for your growing soul and curious mind. The impact this one decision can have can be life-changing! Traveling, working and learning overseas is an opportunity so few get, so if you have that chance, take it!Internships in Barcelona
Looking back when I lived in San Diego, California, I still remember walking to my bedroom on a daily basis, sitting at my computer desk, sighing and staring at the enormous poster I had on the wall – it was a colorful world map. It was there to remind, motivate and inspire me to go for the things that I truly wanted – to return to Spain, travel, continue learning with a keen curiosity, self-educating/evolving, connecting and seeking understanding of other cultures and traditions. It was a difficult choice and challenge to go back to Spain, especially, this time, as an older guy. But I've learned that in the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take. That simple paper on the wall, that world map, kept me on track; it help me stay focus on my goals and to visualize the possibilities – that it was doable, reachable. Fast-forward to now, I have reached that goal. And I couldn’t have done it without the help and continuous support of the superb, professional and friendly duo from Connect-123, Zuzana Jurasikova and Mireia Vila. I’m grateful for Connect-123, the journalism/translator/editor internship opportunity with Barcelona, and for the new friendships I’ve made with other student “Connectors.” I’m aiming to keep growing personally and professionally in the beautiful city of Barcelona. I’ve no regrets in the choice that I made in joining the Connect-123 family and picking Barcelona as the place to pursue my career objectives. For any young soul out there who is contemplating on doing an internship in a foreign country that calls your attention, just do it. It's well worth it! I strongly recommend and believe in investing in your own experience and education because the impact can be of a positive life change, an unforgettable adventure, a transformative and eye-opening journey. In other words: priceless.Internships in Barcelona
My child life experience in Cape Town, South Africa was amazing! When I was given the opportunity to do my practicum aboard I didn't think twice, I took the opportunity right away. Connect-123 assisted in helping me gain knowledge on my career choice as a future child life specialist. I visited several children's hospitals and had the opportunity to observe and learn from experienced child life specialist. Through observations, I learned how play is a universal language as well as the importance of therapeutic/medical play and procedure preparations. The knowledge I had gained from observations gave me the opportunity to put what I had learned into practice when working with children at hospitals. Being able to solve those situations helped me step out of my comfort zone; it made me grow as an individual during my stay in Cape Town. It made me realize I can achieve anything I put my mind to. Connect-123 gave me the chance to go aboard and expand on something I am passionate about. I feel if I hadn't taken that opportunity, I won't be where I am today. When an opportunity is presented to you, take it because you don't know how it is going to change you as an individual. Thank you Connect-123 for letting me grow.
Internships in Cape Town
Barcelona was one of the most eye-opening and greatest experiences that I have ever had. This is all due to Connect-123 and their amazing team. Through this program, I grew both personally and professionally. Sure, it is very hard to be in a different country that you don’t speak the language, not knowing the cultural practices and being away for two months. Connect-123 makes this process so easy that you don’t feel like you are away from home. Your home away from home, the (accommodations) has students from all over the world. It is the best way to learn and experience different cultures. For example, my roommate was from Russia and I have learned so much about their language, culture, and delicious foods. Overall, these experiences by far were the best part of college experiences for me. My internship allowed me to think outside of the box. I learned so much about international business by using software and tools that not necessarily being used in school. Overall, this program allowed to be built a strong network both personally and professionally with people from all around the world. Also, I was able to travel to other countries on holidays or weekends which helped me to understand and live with different people/culture. Looking back, this was the best decision that I have ever made and it was the best part of my life.Internships in Barcelona
Connect-123 gave me the opportunity to gain valuable career-building experience, travel to a new country, and meet wonderful people throughout the journey! I could not be more thankful for the months I spent in Dublin, Ireland as a research assistant in the botany department at UCD School of Biology and Environmental Science. First, my work experience allowed me to gain confidence in a field that compliments my major. I was able to add a list of new skills to my resume and develop connections with professors and students who supported me along the way. I volunteered Monday through Friday, but even so, my hours allowed me time to enjoy the city afterwards. Connect-123 hosted many events to attend, such as a tour of Jameson Distillery and a dinner at the Hairy Lemon (all of which began after working hours). Additionally, every weekend, I was able to branch out and explore other areas in Ireland. I absolutely loved visiting Galway and the Cliffs of Moher! Events and trips, such as these, allowed me to spend time with the other connectors. It was so nice to have these people to make the experience feel comfortable and easy. It can be difficult adjusting to a new location, especially outside of your own country, but this program makes the transition welcoming, with endless support. Thank you Connect-123 for the experience of a lifetime and thank you to everyone I have met! I could not have done this without you! :)Internships in Dublin
My internship in Dublin was wonderful. I worked at Trinity University in a biobank archiving and processing samples. The work environment was a very easy transition. Everyone was welcoming and genuinely wanted to get to know me. I learned so many skills from my job that I am able to take back with me and apply to new jobs in the future. Something amazing about interning abroad is also meeting people from many different places. I interned with people from India, Luxembourg, Germany, and so many others. It was fun to learn side by side with other students and see how different places around the world learn techniques differently. Having an internship abroad was an incredible opportunity. Living in a foreign country and having to experience normal life in a culture other than your own is an experience unlike any other. Vacationing is not the same thing as living. Living in Dublin caused me to go to the grocery store, take public transportation, and experience the locals in a way I wouldn’t have been able to on a short trip. Connect-123 helped ease this transition. I was given an orientation with everything I needed including a list of all grocery stores, transportation information, and local attractions. During my stay in Dublin we had many events that brought participants together and gave us a community. Overall I not only learned about a new location, but I made Dublin a home.Internships in Dublin
As an International Relations student, I was looking for the best option for an internship abroad. I’m interested in global issues such as international law, nationality, migration and human rights. Thanks to Connect-123, I secured a placement in a non-profit organization that assists immigrants and refugees with naturalization in Dublin, Ireland. This experience is by far one of the best I’ve had as it helped me grow professionally and personally. First of all, I was able to work in a multicultural environment. Each of my colleagues had a different nationality and it helped me discover new ways of working. Apart from that, I put into practice and strengthened the knowledge I acquired during my studies, as I had to learn about Ireland’s immigration law and international treaties regarding asylum seekers and refugees. On a personal level, working with refugees and immigrants who are experiencing really difficult situations, made me realize that we need to raise consciousness when treating them in our countries. Every day they taught me things about life and to stay positive no matter what. Connect-123 was there before, during and after my internship. They picked me up at the airport and got me to my place; they were in contact with me to find out how my internship was going and put together social events for interns. I invite all young people to live this experience and to travel internationally to do an internship.Internships in Dublin
I will always look back on my time in Cape Town as a very special time in my life, and I owe it all to Connect-123! I had just graduated and wanted to travel abroad somewhere for a while but also build up my experience in my studied field. I heard good things about Connect-123 from my friend and decided to apply. The people at Connect-123 were very responsive during the whole process of applying and finding me an internship. They couldn’t have picked a better placement for me! My internship gave me real-life experience that will help me in future jobs and just in life in general. Connect-123 also held very fun and exciting events for the other interns which gave us all a chance to get to know each other and explore other things in South Africa. The people in this program have become some of my very best friends. I treasure the people I have met through Connect-123 and my internship.
During my internship in Buenos Aires, I learned a lot about myself and my professional interests. I met great friends from all over the world and was able to travel further to Uruguay and Brazil. However, the most important aspect I take away from this internship is valuable knowledge for my potential future career interest. I have been exposed to an environment and culture far from what I know, and it has allowed me to build confidence and become comfortable within my field. I have developed various crucial skills, such as intercultural sensitivity and health-oriented communication, as well as improved my ability to apply these skills in an appropriate setting. Altogether, during my time abroad in Buenos Aires, I have been able to strengthen my education and gain real-life experience, which will be essential assets in my future profession.Internships in Buenos Aires
I’ve spent the last six months living in Buenos Aires, Argentina with Connect-123 and can honestly say that I have zero regrets about choosing them as a program to guide me through my journey here. I’m 19 years old and was fresh out of high school when I arrived in the “Paris of South America” to begin my gap year practicing journalism before attending Carleton College next year. From the business that they found for me to intern at, to the events that they organized throughout my stay, Connect-123 crafted an experience that I will never forget. The newspaper that I interned at provided me with the skills and knowledge to move forward in my career with confidence. They gave me the opportunity to write over 50 articles about news, politics, and lifestyle going on in Argentina. Through my coworkers, I got connected with writers at Vice and was able to publish numerous photographs online! To say the least, it has been a life-changing experience. In addition to the professional training that I received, Connect-123 also provided support on a personal and social front. As someone who had never lived alone before, the prospect of living alone for the first time in a city of almost three million people was daunting. However, the events put on by Connect-123 with fellow interns at other businesses made me feel more at home and provided me with a group of close friends from around the world that I am still in contact with today. From street art tours, to music concerts, to nights of pool at old neighborhood bars, the events also gave me a chance to get to the know the city from the perspective of both a tourist and a local. Thanks to Connect-123 and their services, I have learned more about myself and the world in six months than I have in years and years of my life back home. I wouldn’t change a single thing about my time here in Buenos Aires and now feel more prepared than ever to take on the challenges of the next chapter of my life.Internships in Buenos Aires
My experience with Connect-123 in Barcelona was absolutely wonderful. I had the resources and contacts available to ease my transition into living and working in a big, vibrant city like Barcelona. For my internship, I worked at a local NGO five days a week, teaching English to young students as well as working as a teacher’s assistant. The organization could not have been more warm and welcoming; in my three months there, I became very close to all my co-workers and students, and leaving was very hard. One of my primary goals was to improve my Spanish, and thankfully Connect-123 was able to provide me with an environment where that was possible. Being a gap year student, this was my first experience living on my own and providing for myself. However, during my time here in Barcelona, I never felt completely lost - I knew that I had a web of resources to fall back on if needed. My three months in Spain will surely be some of the best memories I’ll take with me going forward, from the weekend trips to the early morning Metros. I am extremely thankful for the people at Connect-123 and to all the friends I’ve met here! I know one day I’ll be coming back.Internships in Barcelona
After graduating I wanted to travel and explore the world while gaining experience in my field of psychology. I decided the best way to do so was through an internship. After doing extensive research I found Connect-123 and they helped link me with the perfect internship opportunity working for an NPO in Cape Town. I worked with refugees, asylum seekers, and South African citizens helping them find job opportunities and build professional skills. I loved every minute of my time in Cape Town. I was able to gain so much experience in my field while obtaining life experiences that I only dreamt of having. I don’t believe words can express the love I have gained for South Africa. It is my home away from home and I am determined to return to Cape Town again one day. I believe Connect-123 was the ultimate reason that my experience was so amazing. Because of this program, I have made life-long friends through the interns that were also on the Connect-123 program, as well as members in the Cape Town community. Thank you to Carla, Robyn, Saskia, and Kate for giving me the best experience of my life!Internships in Cape Town
I spent three months interning in Cape Town, South Africa, and it will forever be some of the best months of my life. I gained valuable experience in my field while working for a human rights organization and in the South African Parliament, all while experiencing the unique culture of South Africa and making lifelong friends! Looking for internships is hard, and I didn’t even know where to start after deciding on Cape Town. Thankfully, Connect-123 was there throughout the entire process! Robyn and the crew at Connect-123 helped me find the perfect internship. They also set up my housing before I arrived and met with me when I got to Cape Town to ensure I was settling in! They were always just a call away if I needed anything, and while I never had a single issue during my three months in Cape Town, knowing that they were there if anything should go wrong was reassuring. Connect-123 also set up different events and excursions for all of the interns which was a great way to experience new and unique things that South Africa had to offer. I wouldn’t trade my months in Cape Town for anything, and I’m glad I now have a home away from home in my favorite city in the world!Internships in Cape Town
I spent my internship in Cape Town, South Africa. It was the most amazing three months! I was able to gain experience in my field while experiencing a beautiful new country at the same time. I was able to create many new friendships internationally that I will cherish for the rest of my life. Connect-123 did an amazing job partnering me with a non-profit that fit my career interests perfectly. They not only helped with finding me an internship but also with housing, travel needs, and anything else that I needed while I was abroad. This experience not only taught me a lot about future career goals, but I also learned a lot about a different culture.Internships in Cape Town
My Child Life Practicum in Cape Town, South Africa was unmatched to any traditional practicum in the United States. Under the supervision of a CCLS, I was given the autonomy to practice hands-on therapeutic interventions and procedural preparation to meet the diverse psychosocial needs of hospitalized children and their families. I was able to collaborate with other practicum students for ideas, and work together to do activities at bedside and in play areas that incorporated the whole family unit. These unique opportunities allowed me to work with other healthcare professionals and interact with children with a variety of diagnoses. Both professionally and personally, I gained cross-cultural competence that will translate in all areas of my life. Additionally, we were able to see how Child Life is utilized in alternative settings, and we were also given ample time to explore South Africa on our own personal time. I have gained friendships within my practicum group and other students through Connect-123 that I will forever cherish. I couldn't have asked for a better practicum experience and I feel more than prepared for my Child Life internship. My Child Life Practicum in Cape Town, South Africa has been one of my most favorite and best experiences of my life!Internships in Cape Town
My time with Connect-123 in Cape Town, South Africa was amazing. The organization set me up with a great internship in filmmaking where I was able to learn a lot and gain valuable experience with a company that has been successful in the industry for years. The two months I spent in Cape Town were two of the best months of my life and I cannot wait to go back. From the connections I made to everything that I saw and did both at work and outside of it, I was able to accomplish all that I went there for and more. Thank you to the folks at Connect-123 for this opportunity! I will never forget it.Internships in Cape Town
My six month internship in Buenos Aires surpassed all my expectations. The friendships I made with my fellow Connect interns, with other students studying abroad, and with my coworkers, I know I will cherish for the rest of my life. My experience as a programmer was 110% hands on. As the only programmer in the company, I was given all the work even remotely related to computers. This alone was much more than I would have managed at a similar internship in the US. Furthermore, because all the websites I created were for clients, I was able to meet with clients and really experience the process of digital marketing. Aside from my job, Buenos Aires as a city is wonderful. There is so much green space and culture. Even better, through Connect-123 I was able to participate in a plethora of free activities as well. I would definitely recommend Buenos Aires and Connect-123 to anyone who asks!Internships in Buenos Aires