Posted by gschirm on February 25, 2013
By Joe Daniels – Joe, a student from the University of Kentucky, is participating in a 10 Week Internship in New Zealand.
I’m right around the midway point of my time in New Zealand…and it’s gone by entirely too fast! In the past several weeks, my responsibilities have greatly increased at my internship site, and it has been quite the learning experience to work independently on the projects being worked on. I have had the opportunity to sit down with several Line Managers (Economic Development, Information Technology, Director of Corporate Services etc.) and learn about their roles in Council and how essentially each persons budget/tasks/goals are consistently intertwined with the others. Working in a local government presents quite a few challenges to get things accomplished compared to working in the private sector, as you can imagine. Nonetheless, they all have expressed great enthusiasm and thoroughly enjoy working with such a close-knit team that looks out for one another. A project I am currently working on the analysis of other regional council’s LTP (long-term plans) and Annual Reports for comparative purposes, which is primarily focused on the difference in the balance sheets and income statements. I am comparing areas, which I know little to nothing about, and how their local economy runs. It’s helping me deal with, and overcome challenges that I will most definitely face when arriving back home and getting settled into a career. Working on such projects will provide some great material to apply to any interview with potential employers.
Since I am living a living about 25 miles North of Wellington, I am relatively isolated from peers my age. It’s easy to feel secluded at times, but also allows for you to confront any insecurities you might have moving on from a college campus and living on your own. I’m slowly developing a stronger sense of independence, and not relying on being around friends all the time to keep me busy. Don’t get me wrong I certainly appreciate that kind of lifestyle, but as I near graduation and face the uncertainties of where life might take me, I am as equally appreciative of the feeling that I am more prepared to make such important transition to a career than I was before taking part in this internship. Having said that, the weekends are great and there are plenty of opportunities to take advantage of, as Wellington is a quick train ride away for any lively event you may life to attend.
A large group of students just arrived for the study abroad session, which means University is starting back up and I should have plenty more opportunities to meet new people and expand my network of friends across the globe. Next weekend, I’m attending a huge music festival held on the Wellington Harbor waterfront. It hosts six stages and tons of bands from all over New Zealand. I’m really looking forward to getting a taste of Kiwi music and taking part in an event that has sold out the last five years! I should have plenty of pictures to add from the event, and can’t wait to make the most of these next six weeks! Here is a link if you would like to check it out… http://homegrown.net.nz/