Why I am the most successful young woman you could ever meet
I’m sitting in my room in London, South East, watching at the top of The Shard and trying to put together my thoughts about my experience at Communications department of Overseas Development Institute (ODI). It’s been 3 months since I got here and tomorrow is the last day of my internship. What groundbreaking do I have to say about it? Let me think.
The most stupid question that I get about these past 3 months – was it worth it? Of course!!! For many various reasons. But I always point out that work experience is not the most important one, at least not for me. Let’s be honest – you can get work experience in your motherland and it’s hundred times easier. If you decide to do an internship on the other side of the continent, you’re probably looking for culturalexperience as well. This is what I got here and I could not happier. I made loads of lovely intelligent funny friends who are almost already packing their stuff for a trip to Lithuania to visit me. At first I thought that Britons, who are stereotyped as introverts, won’t approve me – 100% extrovert. For once in my life I’m glad I was wrong. Since I’m counting my last days at ODI, today my colleagues arranged a lovely surprise leaving lunch at my favorite restaurant by the office. This proves that they are warm friendly people who treat you equally with every other staff member.
When it comes to work, looking at a broader picture, it’s very valuable to know what work in the office of a big organisation based in Western Europe looks like. People at ODI are very hard working and you can tell it after spending your first 10 minutes here. This is also because you could never hear a word not related to work. EVER. And they work so hard that their lunch break is simply for going across the street, buying a sandwich, coming straight back and eating it by computer. Yes, that’s not so much fun but who said that office has to be fun? (They’re so much fun after work in a pub, though). You have to respect this attitude towards work. Maybe that’s the reason this organisation is so successful in their work field. And I can tell that my department – central communications team – is very professional and devoted to what they do. Not only I learned a lot from them, I feel being inspired by them to be in it by 101%.
If I never had this amazing opportunity to do this internship, I would have never been able even to have a sneak peek at ODI. People at ODI were shocked when they found out that I was only 22 years old. ‘I thought you were at least 25’, – I’ve heard this a million times. Once I asked why I looked older for them (hey, I’m a woman and that’s not the biggest compliment). Turns out it’s not about my looks, simply nobody gets to work at ODI without a Masters degree. (And I’m still struggling with my Bachelor. At Vilnius University. Before they met me they didn’t even know what Vilnius was, by the way.) There you have it – I am probably the youngest person ODI has ever had and only because of UNDP. Since it’s so competitive to get into ODI, in my CV these three letters will look pretty amazing.
People who know me can guarantee you that I’ve never felt lack of confidence in myself. But after this internship in London, I feel even more confident (if that’s possible). I really enjoyed this internship, this experience, company of my new friends, big city and PUBS J Everyone keeps saying that they can imagine how sad I am having to leave. But to be honest I’m not so sad – I’m happy. I’m happy that I had this experience, it’s very valuable and I’m ready to move on – to take everything that I gained here and use it in my promising career elsewhere. That’s why these internships are for, right?
Student of Journalism, Vilnius University