Jeanna Kruse is a double major in Development Studies and Public Policy. She had the opportunity to spend summer as an intern in London, during the Olympics! Here is her story.
"My summer was spent in London interning for a non-profit organization called Emerge Poverty Free. The organization partners with local NGOs in developing countries to provide services that help the people in those communities get out of poverty. In the office I worked with the Marketing department as well as the Trusts and Foundations department. With these roles I did many tasks but most of my time was spent writing various pieces for the marketing department and researching information about grants for trusts and foundations.
Emerge Poverty Free gave me several interesting tasks that I felt were really beneficial for the organization. One of my favorites has putting together "report cards". The organization has a program called I Love School in which they have funded five schools in Haiti after they were destroyed in the earthquake. The report cards are a way for the organization to give donors information about the school's progress in an interesting and fun way. The cards included a story from a student, a message from the principal, goals, achievements, and pictures of the schools and children. My job was to take the information that the schools gave from Haiti and put it into the report cards in a fun and uniform fashion. It was the first task that I had a lot of freedom with and I really enjoyed learning more about the project. Seeing the finished project was a great feeling.
Being in London is absolutely amazing and I highly suggest interning or working here. I really feel like I got to become integrated in the culture. The first day of my internship they asked me to write a piece about one of their projects to get a feeling of my writing style and the British spelling changes started the culture shock. Programme, organisation, enrol are just a few of the spellings changes I had to adjust to quickly. The office was always ready for tea, which I learned to make the proper British way, and I received lessons on what exactly taking the Mickey out of someone entails. I had the opportunity to exchange great stories with the people in my office not only about cultural difference between Britain and America but also about the differences in the non-profit sector.
One aspect of the culture that I really like is the use of "Cheers". Everyone says it in London often as a way of saying goodbye and thanks. It's used at the end of most emails, phone calls, and any casual social interaction and I think it's great. The problem is that when an American accent says "Cheers" is just sounds wrong. The first time I tried to use it in the office one of my coworkers gave me a weird look so I repeated myself in an exaggerated American accent and with both laughed. The American using "Cheers" became a little bit of an office joke between that coworker and me. She would reply to my emails with an exaggerated Cheers!! J as a closing and I would reply with a email ending with Cheers? This was how my time in the office was, super productive but also very enjoyable. All of the people were amazing and patient with me.
This internship gave me the opportunity to travel to several other countries in Europe which was a dream come true for me! It was the first time I left the United States and in those two months I was able to see Ireland, Spain, and France in addition to working as a fulltime intern in London! It may feel like I'll never not be tired again and I have never been so busy. I am currently writing this on my phone as I sit on the ground of a very full train on my way to Manchester to see an Olympic football match. I never thought I would ever have the opportunity to do something like this in my life but here I am, writing this essay as I sit on the floor between a Brazilian and a Croatian on our way to watch the Olympics.
I found out about the internship opportunity because of the Glenn Global Internship Program through the John Glenn School of Public Affairs. The program is a partnership between the John Glenn School and Dream Careers, an organization that provides opportunities for students to intern in the department of their choice in various areas of the world. In the program I was with 114 other students from mostly the US but several from the UK. The program arranged housing, meals, and a trip to Paris for us. Going through the program made making arrangements for the internship relatively easy and gave my parents peace of mind knowing that I was not alone in a foreign country. My parents have never left the United States so I am so thankful that they let me take this opportunity because it had been unbelievable."