Why Every MBA Should Intern Abroad
While many recognize the value of studying or interning abroad as an undergrad, the opportunity is just as valuable for graduate students, if not more!
I was fortunate to study abroad twice during undergrad and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to intern abroad now in grad school. MBA programs are notoriously fast-paced and jam-packed, leaving little room for much else but most require students to complete an internship. If any part of you is curious about interning abroad, then take a look at the reasons why I think every MBA should intern abroad.
1. International Experience
Firstly, every MBA should intern abroad for the international experience alone! In an increasingly globalized world, business students must have the cultural competence and global awareness to work with people from around the world.
An international experience within a professional environment such as an international internship is an ideal way to show current or future employers your ability to adapt and conduct business in another country.
Me on the first day of my internship with my supervisor!
I have the pleasure of interning abroad in the innovative and international city of Barcelona, Spain where I work with colleagues from a variety of European countries. This experience will be invaluable in my career as an international marketer.
2. Language Skills
My top priority for coming to Barcelona, Spain for an international internship was the opportunity to practice Spanish in a working environment and expand my vocabulary.
In only a few weeks’ time, I have already learned the lingo of my industry and am more confident in discussing the work that I do in another language. Spanish will be a particularly useful language for me when I return home to the United States and will be able to communicate with Spanish-speaking clients or customers.
If you’re hoping to work with international clientele or business partners in your career, then boosting your language skills is another reason that every MBA should intern abroad.
I also stayed with a host family. Above is a photo of us together.
The best way to learn another language is to immerse yourself in it and an international internship is an excellent way to do just that.
2. Networking Opportunities
MBA students are constantly being told about the importance of networking for their careers, but many limit themselves to those attending the same school. If you really want to realize the value of networking, then an international internship would expose you to industry professionals in another country.
The connections that you make while interning abroad may be very beneficial if you want to work in that country in the future or even when you go back home.
You may be surprised to find out how many professionals move from country to country to build their careers, so a connection in another country could end up being a connection in your home country down the road.
CIS Abroad internship programs organize special networking events for interns in addition to the regular networking and relationship-building that happens at your internship placement.
3. Professional and Personal Growth
Professional and personal growth are inevitable when interning abroad. You may gain hard skills at your internship like coding while gaining soft skills after work like cross-cultural communication.
Employers are looking for well-balanced graduates with a range of both hard and soft skills in order to be successful in today’s business environment.
An international internship will challenge you in ways that you simply can’t anticipate and with that comes growth.
Why CIS Abroad?
Securing an international internship is even harder on your own than getting one in your hometown, so I chose to work with CIS Abroad, an organization that provides study abroad and international internship opportunities to qualifying students.
CIS Abroad made the process of finding, interviewing, and landing an international internship in my field of interest much easier than it would have been on my own.
They provided support throughout the entire process and I’m thrilled with the results.
Did you know that you could intern abroad after undergrad? Convinced that every MBA should intern abroad? What are you waiting for? CIS Abroad’s internships for business and marketing students could be your dream internships!
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