[h2a] Albert Dongmo [/h2a]
- Internship Duration: 12 weeks
- University: University of Bradford
- Internship Program: China Internship
- Industry sector: Civil Engineering
- Internship / Job tittle: Structural Engineering Intern
- Key assignments: Make structural design and analyse the structural behavior of steel/concrete framed buildings
What do I do in Shanghai?
In the end of my academic journey in England, I had to think about where I’ll be in the coming months. I always believed that there is a bridge between academic and professional life. This bridge is called “Professional Internship“. In order to best start my professional journey, I decided to undertake an internship in china…and this is what I’ve been doing since January 2013.
Why did I choose China to do an internship abroad?
From my experience abroad, I’ve noticed that for foreigners to be truly successful in a country/continent that’s not theirs, they need to stand-out from the crowd. I then looked at the world and tried to find out which part of the planet has some exceptional well-known civil engineering structures. Two answers came up: China and Australia. However,I had to choose one. I then tried to compare China and Australia in terms of civil engineering. Below is why China came up as the favorite:
- The longest bridge ever built on the planet is in China.
- The safest building on the planet is Shanghai World Financial Center. This building has the potential to safe people’s life in the event of terrorism.
- The quickest building ever built is in China. They built a 6 stories building in ONE week.
Because of the above reasons, I made a phone call to my dad and said to him: “Dad… be financially ready because I’m off to China”.
My advice/recommendations to students/fresh graduates/future interns…
While they are still at University, students should start thinking about their professional life. They should have a goal and make sure that they’ve got a plan and effective strategy to reach their goal. Above that, they must know that to get money they need to spend money. Then they should go online and take risks.
Fresh graduates must know that an internship is not only a fantastic opportunity to make an impactful international CV but it is also a great chance to get trained by professionals – make mistakes while working – and learn from those mistakes, then avoid doing it while undertaking a proper job.
Future interns must feel passionate and self-motivated in their working environment. They must know that nothing is made to be easy in life. My formula is simple: “If you work harder, you will get through”. While undertaking the internship, interns must keep in mind what they want to gain from it. They must remember why they needed an internship. They must make sure that at the end of their internship, they can say: “If I’m invited for a graduate job interview, I’ll tell the interviewer that I believe I’m special…you won’t need to babysit me because I’ve got the potential to successfully do this, this, and that”. All future interns must be dynamic, ambitious and have the courage to take risks.
Outside my internship environment, I amazed and have been amazed in Shanghai. During my first week here, some people looked at me like I’m coming from the moon. I’ve been in some situations where some Chinese girls were suddenly scared of me in the street…but I was saved by my smile. Chinese people are friendly but appear more conservative and pay a strict attention to their culture.
The Chinese New Year is definitely an event not to be missed. It’s full of impressive fireworks. I loved the red decorations everywhere in town. On that day, I was surprised and amazed to be invited by some Chinese grand mums and granddads to join their little kids and them for playing football in front of my apartment….unbelievable.