Interning in London has been an incredible experience. My time spent at Everyman Media Group has been both challenging and fun. I feel I have learned so much regarding the United Kingdom movie theatre industry, the accounting and finance fields, and also the day to day tasks of a majority of any corporate firm. I was very curious as to what I would be doing at a movie theater company, but I am extremely grateful I was assigned Everyman. I also feel I have gained so many professional and personal development skills through this experience, like getting out of my comfort zone and being more independent.
One of the main things I was concerned about before coming to London and going to my internship was that I had never had an internship before. This made me very self-conscious, and I worried that I would not be able to complete the tasks assigned to me. I also worried about getting along with my co-workers, since I was younger and unexperienced. Even with these fears, I tried to walk in on my first day with confidence. I distinctly remember all of the hellos and handshakes with the finance team, and then the rest of the company. Just from this greeting, I felt extremely comfortable. I was never really focused on befriending any of my colleges because I felt that I would just be the annoying and incompetent intern, but after a couple days at the office I realized I needed to step out of my comfort zone and engage in the office banter; I needed to get more involved because my co-workers were awesome people. After a couple weeks, I really started enjoying going to work. I am very thankful I forced myself to step out of my comfort zone and be more social with people I would never imagine befriending. I now hope I will be able to keep in touch with these people when I am back in the states. I also had to step out of my comfort zone when it came to asking questions. Back home I really try to do tasks by myself and avoid asking questions. Since I had no experience in the work I was assigned to do at Everyman, I had to learn how to ask questions. My supervisor was a great ally and would answer any and all of my questions. He never seemed annoyed and was thankful I was doing my work diligently. Stepping out of my comfort zone had never really been one of my strengths, but I feel this experience has allowed me to gain a better grasp as to where it is important and necessary.
Although I live on campus at school, the University of Pittsburgh is 20 minutes away from my home. This ability to go home whenever I felt like it had made me still semi-reliant on my parents, more so than a majority of college students. I chose to study abroad in hopes that I would gain more independence because I would be forced to go four months without going home and seeing my parents. This distance has allowed me to realize I am able to live and work away from my family and friends. I also feel this experience has allowed me to gain more independence because I was assigned many tasks with very vague instructions. Although my advisor was very welcoming to questions, there would be times where he would be busy with something else. This would force me to have to be quick on my feet and figure things out for myself. I was able to think back to previous examples and figure out problems without anyone’s help and it felt great.
Overall this internship has been an extremely positive experience. I am very glad I have been able to gain these skills and many more through studying and interning abroad. Interning aboard has been one of the highlights of my time here. Everyman Media Group was an amazing company to work for. I am excited to see what the future holds, and I know these skills will translate extremely well to any job I take in the future.