Why do an entrepreneurial internship overseas? Here are five good reasons!

These days, it’s not enough to just say you’ve had a solid education – you need the experience! Many of you may already have to do internships to complete your courses, but what if we told you that you can swap your school’s standard internship for one that’s overseas? The Global Entrepreneurial Internship (GEI) allows you to travel, explore new cultures, and experience what it’s like to work in a fast-paced startup.

The self-secured internship will make you more resilient, connected, and experienced in the real world. And the benefits are plenty:

1. You get to experience living abroad and score a chance to jump straight into the startup world!

If you’ve always loved to travel, this seems like a natural calling. GEI will help you with visa application, travel arrangements, and the sourcing of accommodation, so you can simply focus on exploring your new city and job. There are plenty of options for where you can intern depending on your abilities – within Asia, there’s Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, and Jakarta. Further afield are Sydney, London, Helsinki and even Silicon Valley!

2. Build an enviable international network early on.

Every career these days is all about connections, and you can never have too many people in your network. During your internship, you’ll be working closely with and learning from entrepreneurs and founders of companies, giving you an enviable network within the startup community overseas. It’s a unique innovative ecosystem which gives you the opportunity to experience startup life first-hand. If you need a bit of a boost, GEI also arranges for networking events and entrepreneurial activities!

The range of industries is wide – from retail and healthcare services to machine learning and cybersecurity – so you’ll be able to tap into this global network when you return to Singapore. If you’re planning to start your own business, interning at a startup gives you the chance to contribute your ideas and help build a growing business – it’s these experiences that are vital to your success.

3. Gain international experience, which is great for your resumé!

You’ll experience first-hand what it’s like to be working in an international job market – this global awareness will strengthen your soft skills like communication and independence. Besides, an internship is a great way to trial run a career field – you can test out a career as a full stack developer in Sydney or Hong Kong, or a UI/UX designer in Jakarta or Helsinki. There are also non-technical internships like content marketing, graphic design, or even creative writing in cities like Bangkok, Jakarta, or Helsinki.

4. Live like a local – with a monthly allowance!

You’ll make new friends and immerse in their local culture first-hand, which will help you understand how other people live outside of Singapore. Prior to your internship, GEI also organises development workshops and a bootcamp, so you won’t be jumping into the unknown.

Living abroad also helps you improve your language skills, whether you’re practising more Mandarin in Shanghai or Beijing, or learning local lingo in Sydney or Silicon Valley. Besides providing pastoral care for interns, GEI also provides language lessons! What’s more, you’ll be given a monthly allowance that covers your living expenses during your overseas internship so you can focus on the experience!

5. Become independent earlier than your peers!

Nothing makes you learn or become independent faster than by immersing yourself in a new country which you aren’t familiar with. Since your internship can range from a couple of months to a year, it’ll give you ample opportunity to get used to your new environment and thrive in a fast-paced startup setting. Living independently will also help you learn about budgeting and basic ‘adulting’ chores, so you’ll be more experienced to tackle life after school. Very rarely do students get this opportunity, so it’ll give you a huge advantage over your peers who may not be able to step outside of their comfort zone.

Interested in the Global Entrepreneurial Internship?

You need to be either a current polytechnic or autonomous university student. If you’re interested or want to find out more about available funding schemes you qualify for, submit your particulars to bitly.com/GEI2019.

If you’re willing to work (hard) overseas, have a good attitude, show initiative/creativity, or have started your own business, you may be one of GEI’s several interns flying overseas to work! For more info, visit the GEI website.