I did not know what I was getting myself into when I showed up in London a little over two months ago. Sure, IES Abroad and the University of Michigan prepares you a bit before arrival, but it by no means gets you ready to be on your own, working, studying, and living in a foreign country. Two months ago I just wanted to leave London with some experience in a professional office environment, maybe some contacts, and some perspective with what type of education-based career path I wanted to follow. I am going to take away a lot more than that, and it is surreal to me that this experience is coming to an end.
As this experience wraps up I am able to fully reflect on my experience from my first internship (of hopefully many). I have certainly learned a lot: from office etiquette to event planning skills to teamwork, the Fulbright has been an amazing company to work with. They sat me down a few weeks in and asked, “what skills do you want to leave with?” They were going to let me take the reigns a bit, and because of that I got to work on jobs I had never done before. I now have professional experience in experience in event planning, social media, and improved organizational and people skills. I will also be leaving with some amazing contacts in London that I will certainly utilize when the time arises.
But I think overall, I will really be taking home some new and improved confidence after this entire experience which I give massive credit to the skills I learned professionally and those I embraced during my leisure time. At times both in the workplace and out of it I was lost. A lot. So I am extremely thankful to those who lent me a helping hand; whether it was learning how to write a social media analytics report or ending up on a random street corner in London. Honestly, I have never really been on my own before this experience. I live in Michigan, go to school in Michigan, my family is never more than a 25 minute drive from campus. So, the fact that, on my own, I really fell in love with country and became comfortable in one of the largest cities in the world is crazy.