Reviews

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!

Scroll down to view all – or filter by destination, opportunity or both.

Destination

Opportunity

Anne Willems of Brilman

Human Rights intern | Dublin
University College Roosevelt
24 June 2018

After I got my legal bachelor’s degree I decided I wanted to take some time off to get some practical experience in the field before continuing to get my master’s degree. I chose Connect-123 because of its connections abroad, specifically in the field of human rights. Thanks to Lea Levy and Nikki Madden (Dublin Programme Coordinator) I spent six months working for a human rights organization in Dublin. Coming to Dublin, and working for a small NGO, has truly been a phenomenal experience and one of the best choices I’ve made in my life. Dublin is a city filled with culture, history, multiculturalism, and of course pubs. It is a city where the craic never ends! My time here has been marked by one amazing event after another, both organized by my workplace and Nikki. When I started, all I knew was that I would be working as a policy intern for a migrant women’s rights organization. During my time there, the scope of my work evolved far beyond policy. During my time, I have been able to attend UN meetings, organize a national conference, facilitate training for migrant women, conduct several types of research and much more. I have met and worked with national politicians and policymakers such as Leo Varadkar (Taoiseach) and David Stanton TD (Minister of Justice and Equality). I was part of a small team of strong, multicultural women all dedicated to the advancement of migrant women’s rights in Ireland. Due to the differences in cultural upbringing, all of us brought a unique perspective to the table which enabled us to tackle issues from various perspectives. Next to these experiences, Nikki turned an amazing experience into a truly phenomenal and memorable one. Her guidance, care, and support proved instrumental in my being able to settle into work and the city. Furthermore, the events she organized allowed me to not only enjoy the work but also explore the city, the country and the culture together with the other Connectors. Indeed, her care, commitment, and dedication lifted this experience to a whole new level. I recommend Connect-123 and Dublin to everyone who wants an unforgettable internship experience abroad.

Internships in Dublin

Isaiah Sauvageau

Environmental research intern | Dublin
Drexel University
15 June 2018

Living abroad is a liberating experience. Once I stepped off the plane and onto Irish soil, the world grew a little bit smaller. I had never traveled alone before, and the idea of living without any of the comforts of my familiar life was daunting. That is where Connect-123 made life easy. Nikki, my program coordinator, helped me establish the essentials (housing, phone, connections, etc…). I quickly grew comfortable and started to travel throughout Ireland and Europe, experiencing some of the world’s greatest sights, sounds, and tastes. Dublin truly is an international city, and I met people from around the world looking to travel, learn English, study, and work. At my internship, I contributed to a project that reduces agricultural wastes. I was even able to tour a site that converts wastes to energy. This experience helped me to grow into a more confident and independent person and exposed me to new people, ideas, and ways of life.

Internships in Dublin

Sarah Caplan

Social Work Intern | Cape Town
Michigan State University
14 June 2018

Living in Cape Town for two months really provided me with an immersive, cultural experience. The atmosphere in Cape Town is vibrant and lively, and I was able to gain a new perspective on what life is like outside of the US. I was able to get a full understanding of what it is like to live in Cape Town, and got to indulge in the many things the city has to offer. My internship in Cape Town provided me with skills and an experience I would not have been able to gain anywhere else. I will forever be grateful for my time spent in Cape Town and I will take the life lessons I learned there with me wherever I go!

Internships in Cape Town

Jaehun Jeong

Marketing Intern | Barcelona
Myongji University
14 June 2018

Thanks to Connect-123, I was able to spend the best three months in Barcelona. Connect-123 helped facilitate a marketing internship that I’ve always been interested in, and also helped me secure a decent apartment in Barcelona. I was given several creative projects to work on as a marketing intern, and I was able to enhance my working ability through this experience. Apart from internships, these three months were the perfect opportunity to experience Europe. I was able to travel to Spain and other countries in Europe for a relatively low price, which allowed me to experience as much of the Spanish and European culture as possible in a short time. Without Connect-123's help, it would not have been possible to work and travel in Europe. Thank you Connect-123 for giving me this great opportunity and an unforgettable experience!

Internships in Barcelona

Malyah Younis

Architecture intern | Barcelona
University of Huddersfield
14 June 2018

If I had to describe my architecture internship in Barcelona with one word, it would be 'unbelievable'. I am so glad I chose Connect-123; they were extremely helpful with assisting me in finding housing in the heart of Barcelona, as well as introducing me other students on the program which made it easier to explore to the city. I felt like I was able to reach out at any time or if I felt unsafe. I felt right at home. My goals for my time there was to get a hands-on experience in the Architect world; to improve my software skills and learn a bit of Spanish. My first internship I didn’t particularly enjoy the atmosphere and nor was I able to learn the things that I desired. However, my Connect-123 mentor was so understanding and went out of her way to find me another internship, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was part of the production team in several complex project presentations, where I was able to enhance my software skills. As well as being involved in worldwide procedures and construction systems, I was able to adapt well to an English and Spanish company. The weeks in between I was able to travel, explore different cities and famous landmarks while experiencing the tasteful Spanish culture. Connect-123 also organized a lot of fun events outside of work, my favorite being the paella cooking class. I managed to make so many new friends whom I am still in touch with today and was able to create such amazing memories. The start wasn’t as great as I planned but the end was most certainly... perfect. Without doubt, I will be back, maybe in a different country this time, Sydney perhaps. With the help of Connect-123, I have had an unforgettable time and I thank them so much for giving me this opportunity!

Internships in Barcelona

Hana Petker

Medical and Public Health Intern | Cape Town
Michigan State University
14 June 2018

Connect-123 facilitated the most memorable internship experience in Cape Town, South Africa for me. I got to experience aspects of traditional culture and food through various activities organized by Connect-123. I ate local cuisine at authentic African restaurants, I visited local craft markets and enjoyed a wonderful wine tour of the renowned Cape Winelands. I fell in love with Cape Town's breathtaking scenery and got to appreciate its beautiful landscape while hiking up mountains and surfing the clear blue seas. Thanks to my internship facilitated by Connect-123, I acquired exceptional communication skills and developed a deep understanding of different cultures while working in an ethnically diverse environment. I gained new technical skills and underwent immense personal and professional growth. Most importantly, I met people within the medical field who will help with my career networking in the future. Thank you Connect-123 for the providing me with such a wonderful experience!

Internships in Cape Town

Sabrina Sangha

Intern | Shanghai
King's College London
14 June 2018

My time in Shanghai has been life-changing. I could see myself pursuing a career in China and traveling a lot more. Connect-123 gets the right balance between helping and supporting you through your experience but also giving you the independence to explore at your own pace.
Before you travel, Connect-123 talk through everything you need to do and organize. If you have any queries they respond very quickly and are extremely helpful. When you arrive you're picked up at the airport and taken to your flat. I traveled to Shanghai independently so I was sharing a nice flat with one other Connect-123 intern and four other flatmates. That day I was taken around the local area.
I thoroughly enjoyed my work, learning a lot about other disciplines and inspiring me to think more about my long-term goals. Especially exploring Shanghai I could see myself living here long term. The Connect-123 trips are very worth going on! We did two trips outside of Shanghai whilst I was there and you got to see more historical parts of China.  We also did a "Today's China" dinner, where we discussed societal issues in China. That was a great evening of good food, discussion and learning.

Internships in Shanghai

Julia Friend

Psychology Intern | Barcelona
Harvard University
14 June 2018

I do not even know where to begin to describe my experience this past spring/summer with Connect-123. When I first arrived I was immediately in awe of Barcelona and its contagious energy. I remember how nervous I was walking to the first meet up with Connect-123 people and coordinators, but the minute I walked into the restaurant I was welcomed so warmly and felt at ease. It was so incredible to meet people of all ages from all different places. I was worried that my experience would be different from a traditional study abroad program, but what I got was even more unique and something I could have never imagined. I was able to make friends from all walks of life and take time to really explore the city and other parts of Europe, such as Sevilla and Italy. I was also fortunate enough to have the most incredible internship experience. I interned at a psychology center, working on a variety of projects from management, to creative, to clinical, and even getting to sit in on patient visits. I cannot express how much I learned from them and how grateful I am for the experience they gave me. I truly could not have found a better or even equivalent opportunity in the U.S even if I tried. I walked away with incredible relationships and connections, and a completely new outlook on the clinical and academic world of psychology. I am so excited to apply what I have learned to my future studies and plans. Connect-123 truly took the time to get to know me throughout the interview process. I went into the process without a sense of what field I really wanted to intern in, and they found me this incredible opportunity that matched my interests and mindset more than I could have done for myself. My two months in Barcelona went by in the blink of an eye – the sites to see, the food, everything was never ending, and each day I found something new I wanted to explore next. Connect-123 came to me at a point in my life when I was feeling quite down and lost and I am beyond grateful. I learned so much about myself during my journey and gained a new appreciation for all that life has to offer. I will never forget my time in Barcelona and will cherish the memories and friendships made. Barcelona will always hold a special place in my heart and I am already thinking about the next time I can come back!

Internships in Barcelona

Marcella Cross

Nanotechnology intern | Barcelona
14 June 2018

I am so glad that I chose Connect-123. My nanotechnology internship in Barcelona was incredible. Connect-123 was extremely helpful and assisted me in finding housing, coordinating with other students, getting a phone plan, and learning my way around the city. I felt like I could reach out at any time if I needed help or felt unsafe, and someone would help me to feel more at home. My internship experience was fantastic and I learned a lot about physics and chemistry. Connect-123 also helped me to find two additional part-time volunteer programs, where I was able to work with young children. I can only give positive reviews of the program and hope that many other students will get to have the same opportunities as I have. My time in Barcelona was one of the most fun experiences that I have ever had and I cannot wait to go back!

Internships in Barcelona

Hannah Barnes

User Experience Designer Intern | Dublin
University of Texas at Dallas
14 June 2018

Ireland is a gorgeous country with plenty to see and do. I had never traveled abroad before, but the Connect-123 team made it incredibly easy and fun. Connect-123 took care of all of the logistics of my experience, including housing, travel paperwork, and finding the perfect internship in Dublin, and that meant that I could focus on making the most of my time abroad in Ireland. I am so thankful to Lea, Nikki, and Rosie for making this brilliant experience possible. I have to say that my trip to Ireland was hands-down the best experience of my academic career. I worked as a user experience designer at a company that develops travel apps. My company accepted me as an equal member of their team, and I met so many amazing people who acted both as mentors and friends. I traveled as much as I could on the weekends.

Internships in Dublin

Nikki Jamieson

Medical and Healthcare intern | Cape Town
University of Texas at Austin
8 June 2018

My experience in Cape Town completely surpassed my expectations. I was excited to experience a summer immersed in a culture so different from my own, but I was not exactly sure what life in my internship and outside of it would entail. Other Connectors and I spent time hiking the famous trails of the city, exploring the different areas and beach towns, and immersing ourselves in South African culture. My time spent in Cape Town opened my eyes in ways I never knew possible and I truly fell in love with the city that is so vibrant and unique. My medical internship gave me exposure unlike ever before. It gave me the opportunity to expand my knowledge of different health care systems and medical practices used around the world. The doctors, nurses, and fellow interns I worked alongside were inspiring and made me look forward to going to the clinic each day. I can not imagine a better way to have spent my summer growing in knowledge, experience, and making connections with other students from all around the globe. I know this opportunity will shape the way I move forward in my education and career and for that, I am so thankful!

Internships in Cape Town

Cisem Odabasi

Environment and Sustainability intern | Dublin
Kadir Has University
8 June 2018

This was the best decision I ever made! My internship through Connect-123 in Dublin was fantastic. I came in spring, and the weather was lovely. There were flowers, singing birds, and greenery everywhere! I worked next to the Grand Canal, and it was a luxury to have lunch sitting casually next to the canal and enjoying nature. My work environment was lovely, everyone was so nice. Generally, Irish people are friendly, which I think is important when you are far away from home. Dublin is an international city, a multicultural hub, and you hear lots of different languages in the city center. I think Dublin, or Ireland in general, is a place for nature lovers. There are so many outdoor activities to enjoy and it is easy to travel around the country. It's easy to visit places such as Cork and Galway in a couple of hours using public trains and buses. The only thing I wish I'd realized before, is that instead of bringing lots of thick warm clothes, I should've brought mostly waterproof thin clothes, for this time of year.

Internships in Dublin

Justin Lee

Engineering intern | Cape Town
Drexel University
5 June 2018

My engineering internship has been nothing short of spectacular, and it has given me the building blocks to become a successful engineer in the future. I have been able to apply the important lessons and theory learned in engineering school to aid in multiple projects in the renewable energy industry in South Africa. Thank you Connect-123 for helping me put this internship together as coming to Cape Town has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. My time in Cape Town has undoubtedly been the best time of my life. Through Connect-123 I have met like-minded people, who share the same sense of adventure and self-discovery as myself. We have experienced as much of Cape Town as we can, all while forging lifelong relationships that are invaluable to each of us. I have surfed some of the coolest waves in the world, hiked to beautiful peaks, and sipped some of the finest wines during my time in Cape Town. I wish I could say I was proudly South African, as Cape Town has felt like home from the moment I got here.

Internships in Cape Town

Rae Filley

Medical and Healthcare intern | Dublin
Northeastern University
1 June 2018

Connect 123 gave me the opportunity to try something that I didn’t think I would be able to do while still in college. As a nursing major, I only see the clinical side of healthcare, where Connect gave me the opportunity I had wanted to try research. I learned so much and met some amazing people at the research lab where I worked, and have been able to apply the new skills and knowledge that I have gained into my studies. They made it so easy right from the beginning, from finding housing and figuring out what documents I needed to travel, to getting a phone and making sure I was comfortable traveling to work. I felt fully supported and prepared for everything that came my way. I met such an amazing group of people, who made exploring Dublin, and the rest of Ireland, much more fun. Whether it was hiking the trails in the coastal towns, grabbing a bite to eat, checking out a local festival or event, or exploring Galway or Belfast, there was always someone who was excited to go with you. The Connect community, especially the program coordinator Nikki, couldn’t have been nicer or more welcoming. She knew exactly how overwhelming a new and foreign city can be, but she helped make Dublin feel like home right away. She always made sure we were getting the most out of our internship experiences all while planning fun events and showing us the less touristy side of Dublin. I can’t recommend Connect 123 more and I already cant wait to visit this wonderful city again

Internships in Dublin

Emme Sudock

Film and Photography Intern | Dublin
Bennington College
22 May 2018

When I decided to do a film internship in Dublin, I felt I was ready to live abroad and independently. But I knew I still needed support and guidance since it would be my first time. Nervous and excited, Connect-123 surpassed my expectations and helped to make my experience in Dublin amazingly unforgettable. My coordinator was so helpful, friendly and supportive throughout my time there. Through the program, I made many close friends and got to experience so much of Ireland. Connect-123 helped me really find my footing in a new place, and in a new internship, with a sense of confidence.

Internships in Dublin

Isabella Olgers

Film and Photography Intern | Dublin
The University of Sydney
22 May 2018

In between my second and third year of university, I wanted to get some real-life practical experience in my field. As I am studying filmmaking I wanted to learn more about the film industry from the film production perspective. I also knew I wanted to travel, and experience living in another city. When I came across the Connect-123 film and photography internship program, it was exactly what I was looking for. Connect-123 gave me a chance to fully immerse myself in another culture. At the same time, I was doing something practical towards my future career. I'd never been to Dublin before, but I fell in love with it straight away. I made so many friends, many of them through Connect meet-ups. And I had some of the best months of my life which I still reminisce about. I was very impressed with the Connect-123 support network. They helped me find housing and there were regular meetings with our coordinator Nikki, who was there for us for whatever we needed. It was an absolute pleasure to have such a unique experience working in a foreign country. Getting to a new city, sharing a house with other foreigners, and exploring Ireland on the weekends, it all feels like a dream. I will never ever forget my wonderful days in Dublin.

Internships in Dublin

Alison Wall

Healthcare intern | Dublin
University of Minesota
21 May 2018

I cannot recommend Connect-123 enough! I was excited to learn more about my family history in Ireland, as well as gain new professional skills through this internship. I was nervous to spend three months in a foreign country, but Nikki - the Connect-123 program coordinator in Dublin - made me feel so welcome and was a wealth of information on fun things to do both in and out of the city. She also made sure that all the interns in Dublin felt connected and set up activities for us every week! I had an amazing experience, learned new things, and made friends from all over the world. I'm so happy I chose Connect-123 to help me through my internship abroad.

Internships in Dublin

Nicole Johnson

Healthcare intern | Barcelona
University of Illinois at Chicago
18 May 2018

My time in Barcelona was an unforgettable experience and an amazing adventure. I’ve dreamt of going to Spain since I was in high school. For me it wasn’t if I’d travel to Barcelona, it was when. It was my first time ever leaving the United States, so to say I was petrified would be an understatement. I’ll never forget boarding the plane, hugging my family goodbye and heading off into the unknown. A million questions flooded me with anxiety, from “Will anyone speak English?”, “Who am I going to hang out with?”, or “How am I supposed to get to work every day?”. When I got to my apartment, I met with the Connect-123 program coordinator in Barcelona and a few other interns at a nearby coffee shop. I was welcomed with a warm smile and every single anxiety-filled question was answered for me. I met some of the most wonderful, caring, fun, passion-filled people I know. We experienced hiking up to Tibidabo Amusement Park, seeing a Flamenco show, running through Parque Ciutadella, reading at Parque Guell, tanning at Barceloneta, shopping on las ramblas, and eating every tapa imaginable. We traveled to other parts of Europe like Italy and Greece, which was crazy to me how easy and affordable it was to travel to from country to country. I truly could not have asked for a better group of people to experience a new place with. I am beyond blessed that I stumbled upon Connect-123. Connect-123 set me up with an awesome healthcare internship at a leading pediatric hospital in Barcelona. I was pushed here to really dive back into all the years I studied Spanish. In school, I was taught how to read and write Spanish very well, but the conversations in class were minimal and usually with another person whose preferred language was English. But I’ll never forget one day at the hospital it all just clicked for me. I was holding real conversations confidently in Spanish with native speakers, which was something I never believed I would be able to do. Besides getting to live in one of the most renowned cities in the world, one of the biggest things I will take away from this whole experience, was being put into situations where my only choice was to try to speak, understand, and learn Spanish. I feel the only way you can truly learn is when you indulge yourself in the culture. I am beyond grateful to Connect-123 and their staff for being inviting and making my transition easy for me. A quote that stuck with me through this experience is, “One day, you’re 17 and you’re planning for someday. And then quietly, without you ever really noticing, someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life.” So my best advice to anyone beginning this journey is to live in the moment, go eat as much as you can, and go experience as much as you can, because the two to three months you have in Barcelona are going to fly by!

Internships in Barcelona

Amaruc Gessen

Engineering and Industrial Design intern | Buenos Aires
Drexel University
17 May 2018

Interning in Buenos Aires was an amazing experience. It exceeded all my expectations. The city is amazing, my housing was pretty good, the food is incredible and there is always something going on in the city that you can go and do. My engineering and industrial design internship was incredible, even though at first I was a bit intimidated because I did not know anything about 3D printing, but after the first few weeks of doing research, I was actively participating in the design and development projects. This really helped me develop my skills as an engineer and learn how to design and manufacture working prototypes to be implemented in the final product. Connect-123 was always there to help when needed, organizing cool events every week and helping me meet a group full of fantastic people. All in all the experience was a solid 11/10!

Internships in Buenos Aires

Josh Braun

Public Policy internship | Buenos Aires
Colarado University
14 May 2018

My time in Buenos Aires has been unreal. I really did not know what to expect before I arrived. There were so many uncertainties going into the experience, but I could not be happier with how everything turned out! I was welcomed with open arms at my host organization, had an international-filled and always exciting apartment, and the city, oh my gosh. The city is so vibrant and so alive. At times it can be overwhelming, but there is always, like really ALWAYS something to be a part of, or to experience. From cultural events to concerts to sharing mate with friends on a Sunday afternoon. As far as the internship is concerned, I was blown away with the work that I was able to do. I worked with an NGO and with the Provincial Government of Buenos Aires. The office was so welcoming, and the opportunities that I was given were so valuable. For my main project during the internship, I traveled around the province conducting interviews with municipal officials as part of a sustainable development report working in tandem with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. The work was meaningful, and hopefully in the future will have a tangible positive impact in the province. In short, I am so glad that I chose Connect 123, and will be forever grateful for my time in Buenos Aires.

Internships in Buenos Aires
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