My name is Sophie Meloy, and I am a senior at Pitt that will be graduating after the IIP program is complete. Am studying global management and Spanish with a certificate in global studies concentrated in cultural dynamics. This summer I am going to be participating in the IIP Madrid program. I chose to participate in this program because it will fulfil the final three credits that I need for my Spanish major. When speaking with my advisor, I was given the choice to either do a capstone course or to apply for the International Internship Program. I wanted the opportunity to really surround myself with Spanish to help me start to sound more fluent and I thought that doing an internship and a homestay was the perfect way to do that. I had only done one internship before when I was studying abroad through the GBI program in London last year and I wanted to do another to try to make my resume stand out when it comes time to apply to jobs after graduation.
I have previous experience working abroad during my semester in London. I worked as a marketing intern for a small consulting company headquartered in Canary Wharf. The company that I worked for would lead IT as well as personal and professional confidence courses for new hires to other businesses in the area. In my time there I gained a lot of experience working with a very diverse team from several different countries while learning what it was like to work in a British company. Back in Pittsburgh, I work for the athletics department in the ticket office and have been a student employee there since fall of 2021. Working in the ticket office has given me experience working in an office setting in a large organization and I have been able to learn several commonly used softwares that will help me in whatever career I end up in after I graduate.
A main goal that I have going into this program is to improve my professional and colloquial Spanish. I feel like I was at the point of almost plateauing with learning Spanish in university courses. I felt like what I really needed to improve my Spanish was to spend some time in a Spanish speaking country and this program allows me to get some experience being around Spanish all the time, both at work and where I am living. Over the course of the next two months, I hope to see an improvement in my professional Spanish and how fluidly I am speaking so I can feel comfortable one day saying that I am bilingual.
In relation to my professional goals, I am also looking to gain more international experience that will hopefully one day help me get into a master’s program abroad and one day live outside of the United States. Right now, my plan is to work in the U.S. a year or two to gain some more professional experience and then I plan to start applying to master’s programs for international business. I think that having completed an international internship program like this will help on applications and give me some of the experience that many schools in Europe are looking for. After I complete my master’s degree, my ultimate goal is to live abroad, and this internship program will give me more experience living in a city outside of the United States. Overall, program is going to benefit me both professionally and personally by making me a more well rounded person and candidate for a job or master’s program in the future.