How many Internships should I do?
I love internships so much that I did 4 of them for over 1 year 3 months across 3 countries.
Why so much of enthusiasm to work for nothing or just mere peanuts? Working for the sheer joy of gaining experience and not for any monetary gain allows you to work at some really great places that would otherwise not be able to fund your job position considering that you really have not gained much experience to offer in return. You meet many mentors who take the extra step in helping you out. As a young intern, every one assumes that you are hungry and you thus can enjoy some really great food interning around the world.
As a regular employee, you can forget getting spoilt by some of this extra attention.
Here is my story of Internships starting out from India from my very first “Training” experience as it was called.
Internship number 1, Age: 20 ,Location: Hyderabad, India
Duration: 3 months
Company: BHEL Hyderabad (Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, Engineering, Turbines etc)
My first internship at BHEL Hyderabad will teach me the basics of what is expected at the work place. I am talking about a good appetite for lunch time. An opportunity for me as a mechanical engineering student to get in the production floor and learn more of how things are actually done in the industry. First experience, understanding work culture and developing technical knowledge.
HIGHLIGHT DISH: South Indian Thali generous in rice and chutneys (Price: Company Canteen 30 paise & 5 Rs meals)
I enjoyed 30 paise (100 paise = 1 Indian Rupee, 1 US/EUR cent = 60-80 paise, so 30 paise = 1/2 cent) subsidized lunch at the workers canteen which served the best south Indian vegetarian lunch full of rice, sambhar (like dal but tastier if done right), vegetables and interesting chutneys. The food was so good, that I traveled over 2 hours to reach work everyday. Taking the newly established Hyderabadi MMTS/ Local train to travel all the way from Vidhyanagar to the BHEL township at Lingampally. I could have also paid 15 times more (5 Rupees) and had even some Chapati at the Officers canteen. But devouring good food with a bunch of other hungry people after strolling around huge production shop floors all day was an other feeling.
Internship number 2, Age: 21 ,Location: Noida, India
Duration: 3 months
Company: Minda Corporation Ltd (Automobile Accessories manufacturing OEM)
Working with the R & D Design team at Minda Corporation, Noida served as a great opportunity to transition into a serious employee under a management inspired from the Japanese. The design team of over 20 would head down for lunch together and then spend the rest of the lunch hour outside on the grass to warm ourselves under the sun before we head back to our air conditioned premises.
HIGHLIGHT DISH: North Indian Vegetarian Thali (Price: Company Canteen, Free)
The meal at Minda was so simple, nutritious and tasty that I would again find myself traveling all the way from Delhi to Noida everyday to try some nice UP food. Best thing about Minda was the birthdays. Every once in a while when we had a birthday, the guys would rush down and bring over some nice refreshments including tasty Samosas and Kachoris with Gulab Jamuns, Chips and Coke. Big teams ensure a very collage atmosphere and I remember making loads of great friends at Minda even among the senior managers. We spoke about films and all kinds of stuff during our common evening Chai breaks.
Internship number 3, Age: 24 ,Location: Dubai, UAE
Duration: 3 months
Company: Dubai International Financial Center (Financial regulatory organization, Macroeconomic research)
Hoping from Engineering to Finance, i could not have asked for a better internship to get the ball rolling. At DIFC, I would be expected to bring in much more value working in an international context, and thus I would need to be replenished with a healthy dose of proper Hyderbabdi Biryani and Lebanese kebabs.
HIGHLIGHT DISH: Too many choices at the Dubai International Food Center like Kebabs, Salads, Fish & Chips, Sandwich, Indian non vegetarian food like this biryani below etc. (Price: from 20 to 100 AED)
DIFC is clearly the winner when it comes to great lunch time. Accommodating to the diverse expats working in the Dubai financial sector (Financial hub for the MENA region), the restaurants cater to the best of the taste buds from across the world.
Internship number 4, Age: 26,Location: Milan, Italy
Duration: 6 months
Company: Mercer Consulting (Investments & Retirement Consulting)
Finally, my last Internship at Mercer, Milan for 6 whole months. Felt more like full time work actually. Best thing about interning in Italy is that you eat good. You are lucky if you receive buono pasto or vouchers for a full course Italian meal. Eating good lunch everyday at work is what leads to the great Italian results. A good meal is of top priority to the Italians. Though often due to busy work loads the guys might just grab a quick Panino or Sandwich. Having sampled great Italian food not only in Milan but all over the North of Italy, I was still constrained with choice as I do not eat Beef and and Pork. My red meat comes from only Sheeps and Goats, and boy was I lucky to have visited the hilly Sheep laden region of Abruzzo with the guys from Mercer.
HIGHLIGHT DISH: Usual meal at the Platz a real nice lunchtime Italian restaurant that serves great food in the price range of < 10 euros per dish.
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