Adelante Internship Abroad is “Definitely Worth It!” – Candidate Spotlight with Shayan V.
Here’s an article written by one of our recent candidates, Shayan, who just came back from her internship in Madrid! We offer year round internships in several countries for our candidates so that they have the opportunity to travel and intern any time of the year between one to twelve months.
Internship in Madrid – Definitely Worth It!
Let me start off by saying the decision to intern abroad has turned out to be the best decision I have made in my personal, professional and educational life. It’s hard to believe I was so nervous and scared at first but after support from my family and the staff at Adelante, I embarked on a once in a lifetime journey that changed my life.
Prior to this internship, I attended school at San Jose State University before taking a semester off in order to transfer schools. However, I did not want to waste the semester, and since I had always wanted to go abroad once I found out about Adelante, I was sold. I’m currently studying communications hoping to one day find a job working with a major sports organization. Since I’ve always been a huge fan of sports, especially Real Madrid Club de Fútbol, having this internship under my belt will definitely help me with my future career goals.
Why I Chose to Intern in Madrid
For as long as I can remember I’ve been in love with Spain. My dad lived in Madrid when he was younger so growing up he would always tell me stories about his adventures which made me fall even more in love with Spain, especially Madrid. I also learned a lot about Spain in my history classes which prompted me to do my own research and learn about the rich culture and beautiful scenery.
Finally, after years of obsessing over this beautiful country, my mom surprised me with a spring break trip to visit the place I wanted to see more than anywhere else in the world. I remember my mom specifically telling me to not get my hopes up because I’ve built up this amazing place and she doesn’t want me to be upset if it doesn’t meet all my expectations but as I expected, it exceeded all my expectations and she had to drag me back to America kicking and screaming. On the trip back home I told my mom that I would be back so I started planning my return the second I landed.
I’ve travelled around the United States, a few countries in Mexico and the Caribbean but nothing compares to Spain, particularly Madrid. There is a different atmosphere in this city and it welcomes every visitor with open arms. Madrid is the perfect mixture of old Europe mixed with modernization. The buildings rocket into the sky with the architectural design of the 19th century and the technology of the modern day. Around every corner is a plaza or square commemorating Spanish history and of course, an endless supply of museums to visit. Down every cobble stone street you will find an array of restaurants and bars serving a variety of tapas and drinks, and within those establishments you will not find a single person engulfed in their phone but instead they are enjoying each others company.
In case the history, the views and the food wasn’t enough, the city has some of the best shopping in all of Europe with an assortment of shops all over the city. It’s impossible to have a boring day in a city where you could spend a lifetime but still not see everything. However, the absolute best part of Madrid is the people who live there and I’m convinced the kindest, most generous people inhabit this city. Madrileños, as residents of Madrid are frequently referred as, are always willing to help recommend a place to eat, guide you in the right direction or simply help with your Spanish. The kindness of this city is the first thing a visitor will be exposed to which makes everyone who visits this city fall in love.
A Typical Day in Your Internship
As far as the internship, I was fortunate enough to intern with the Real Madrid Foundation | Real Madrid CF which turned out to be the greatest experience for my career goals. A typical day at my internship involved hopping on the Metro to Retiro Park in order to get to the practice field. I would meet with the coach of the team and we would discuss the plans for practice that day. The Real Madrid Foundation have many youth teams that play all over the city of Madrid and Retiro park just happens to be one of their practice grounds.
The coach would tell me her plans for practice and in order to help improve my Spanish I would be the one informing the young players. The practices usually consists of 3-5 exercises and a scrimmage at the end, once I finish explaining the exercises I would help guide the players making sure they were completing it correctly. Each practice is roughly 90 minutes and we work with two teams a day which made my schedule Monday-Thursday 5:30pm-8:30pm with occasional games on the weekends. Not only was the schedule easy to adapt to but every single person whom I encountered at the foundation and park provided me with support and assistance anytime I needed anything. They were all so welcoming and made the experience even better than it already was.
Living in Madrid
As excited as I was for this internship it was still rather difficult to adapt to in the beginning. The entire time I was speaking only in Spanish and even though the classes helped, I was still not extremely confident but after a few days and help from the coaches, it improved daily. Like I mentioned, the people in Madrid are extremely kind and helpful so if they see you’re struggling, like I was in the beginning, they are more than happy to help you.
What I Gained from My Internship Abroad
This was an opportunity that I would have never received in America. Being able to intern with such a respected foundation and having the ability to network provided me with professional relationships that I can potentially return to after I finish school. Living in a foreign country, being surrounded by a new culture and interning gave me a new perspective for my career path, encouraged my independence and the need to push myself to achieve my goals, and to put it simply, it was a fun adventure unlike anything I had ever done before. Regardless of what you do or where you go, you will grow from your experience and it will look amazing on a resume. For me, the ability to be submerged in the culture, learn Spanish, travel, and meet new people all while experiencing a once in a lifetime internship will forever shape the person I am.
– Shayan V. (Internships in Madrid, Spain)
It’s not too late to apply for a spring internship! Apply now for an internship starting in April 2017 by Wednesday, February 15. We offer several summer internship and study abroad opportunities in other parts of the world as well. Summer study abroad programs are available in Spain, Costa Rica and Scotland.