Home

 

Getting Experience

- # of # Filtered -

Getting In Sync In Nairobi

Q&A with Elisabeth: Interned in Kenya
Share this
Print this
Elisabeth
Interned in Kenya
University of Waterloo
Her thoughts on Motivation
As someone who loves to learn new languages, immerse myself in different cultures, and engage in unique travel experiences, I had a desire to go out and explore the world around me.
Her thoughts on Language Learning
Whether I was at work, volunteering, or just walking in the markets, locals would take the time to teach me a few words in Kiswalhili.
Her thoughts on Language Learning
In the workplace, everyone spoke in English, but my supervisors and co-workers taught me a few words in the local language, and when I would go out on weekends to the market, I would try to apply what I'd learned.

Where did you intern abroad? What was your position?

I was an intern at Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi. My internship was working as a project officer in the nursing services department, so I had the opportunity to collaborate with a variety of people, which was a great exposure to the international workplace. I learned from physicians, nurses, pharmacists and even patients.

What made you want to intern abroad?

As someone who loves to learn new languages, immerse myself in different cultures and engage in unique travel experiences, I had a desire to go out and explore more of the world around me. After traveling to Brazil with Global Youth Network in the summer after my first year of undergraduate studies, I decided that I wanted to complete at least one of my work terms abroad.

How did you conduct your search? What made you select your program/company?

I was part of the co-op program at the University of Waterloo. As a result, we had access to a database of jobs and internships, one of which was a posting by Aga Khan University. I've always especially wanted to work in a developing country, so I decided to apply for the posting.

How did you deal with the cultural divide during your internship?

People were amazing and warm, and because of that I was able to learn a lot more about the local culture than I might have otherwise. I had amazing supervisors and co-workers who patiently introduced me to the culture in Kenya while I was doing my internship there. I also made local friends, some of whom taught me to cook traditional dishes. There were certain foods that I had in Nairobi that I never had in Canada; for instance I learned to make chapatis, githeri, mukimo, pulao, sukuma wiki and ugali from my friends and co-workers. My favorite dish is pulao rice.

Whether I was at work, volunteering, or just walking in the markets, locals would take the time to teach me a few words in Kiswalhili. I am so grateful and blessed to have encountered such phenomenal people full of kindness and care while I was in Kenya.

What was the most important thing you learned about communicating in a foreign culture?

In the workplace, everyone spoke in English, but my supervisors and co-workers taught me a few words in the local language, and when I would go out on weekends to the market, I would try to apply what I'd learned. My sentence structure and pronunciation might not have been perfect, but the locals were really helpful, and everything becomes easier with practice!

What is your number one tip for anyone hoping to follow in your footsteps?

Don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone!

What are your future plans for going abroad and for your career?

I definitely want to spend some more time exploring different parts of the world because there is still so much to learn and experience. In the future, I hope to be able to find a career that would enable me to make a positive impact especially in impoverished areas of the world.

Advice from MyWorldAbroad
Jean-Marc Hachey, Publisher

As is the case with many people, Elisabeth's first experience abroad has ignited an intense curiosity about the world, and a desire to work internationally assisting those in need. If you are interested in starting out on a career in international development, try and spend as much time as possible overseas before graduation. If you choose to pursue a master's after your undergrad degree, consider extending your term of study to incorporate an internship or research project abroad. The more experience you have working in developing nations or with international development non-profits, the more hirable you'll be after graduation. The links below will be useful to anyone setting out on a career in international development.

  • Whatever your major, consider reading the section NGOs & International Development. An essential factor in becoming successful in this field is to develop managerial skills in addition to your specialized skills.
Elisabeth's Next Steps
Advice from MyWorldAbroad
by the founder of MyWorldAbroad
Jean-Marc Hachey
Want to Have the Same Experience?
Want to Have the Same Experience?
10 Core Global Competencies
Take control of your career with this ESSENTIAL model!
Virtual Internships in 2022!
Remote work is the way of the future! Start planning YOUR virtual international internship now.
The 1-Year & 4-Year Global Mindset Maps!
Don't miss your blueprint for success! Set goals & take action to build the Global You.
The Global You
What skills, knowledge and experiences can change your life? Find out with this NEW model!
Quizzes & Scorecard
Take these simple quizzes to assess your international skills, experiences & job search readiness!
The Culture Tree
EXPLORE the three levels of culture!
9760
- # of # Filtered -
  • 102
102
16392
Building International Career Skills Online
1
16382
Making the Most of Lockdown with a Virtual Internship
2
16320
Independent, International, Virtual! A UN Internship Online
3
16312
Virtual Internship for a Cross-cultural Future
4
16157
Zoom Zoom! A Virtual Internship with Central America
5
9775
A Year Of Feeling French
6
10153
China, South Africa And Beyond!
7
9776
Soaking Up Japanese Culture
8
9764
Do It Yourself! A Proactive Intern in Rome
9
15631
An International Career in the Making: Asia, Africa and Beyond
10
15405
From Daydream to Reality: Teaching Abroad
11
10923
Insight And Education In Korea
12
15401
From Korea to Oman: Teaching English Around the World!
13
9761
Communicating Creatively In Spain
14
9773
Independent In India
15
9791
Making Contacts Count In The UK
16
9740
Sports, Study And Fun In France
17
9743
Hooked On Volunteering!
18
16316
Exploring the Sights, Sounds & Tastes of Mexico City
19
16387
An Epic Internship in Malaysia
20
9756
Springtime In Spain
21
9763
A Professional Visit To Vietnam
22
9780
A Year In Marvelous Mexico!
23
9751
A Canadian Globe-Trotter Visits The US
24
9768
Going Solo In Spain!
25
10188
Now Or Never In Colombia
26
9792
Rolling With The Punches In Seoul
27
9745
An Unforgettable Adventure In Nanjing
28
9774
Gaga For Ghana!
29
9783
Off The Beaten Path In Africa
30
9755
People, Places And Passionate Volunteering In Peru
31
9778
Study And Adventure In New Zealand
32
9777
Into The Wild In Alaska
33
9754
Building Memories In India
34
9750
Host Hospitality In Morocco
35
9747
Fun And Friends In The Netherlands
36
9748
Adventure In The Alps
37
9786
Kids And Culture In Korea
38
9772
Learning To Go With The Flow In France
39
9762
American Freshman In London
40
9771
Learning To Love London
41
9742
Take-Charge Travel: Germany And Beyond!
42
9746
A Cross-Cultural Co-Op In West Africa
43
9760
Getting In Sync In Nairobi
44
9759
From Cold Feet To Confidence In Germany
45
9779
One Summer, Two Internships!
46
9785
Motivated In Madagascar
47
9741
Adapting to Work In Peru
48
9784
Skill-building in Bonn
49
9753
A Season in Sweden
50
9765
Simpatico in Florence
51
9782
Making The Most Of Milano
52
9737
Passionate About Panama
53
9766
Short-Term Trips For Long-Term Gain
54
9781
A Hospital Helper In Costa Rica
55
9789
Loving Life In Lyon
56
9790
Design And Dining In Korea
57
9770
Contributing To Change In Ghana
58
9757
Teaching And Learning In Tanzania
59
9738
Living For The Moment In Valencia
60
9767
Beyond The Call Of Duty In Africa
61
16174
An Empowering Virtual Internship in Nicaragua
62
9744
Food, Fun And Festivals In Germany
63
16161
A Bright & Friendly Cross-cultural Workspace
64
16017
A Globally-minded Visit to Qatar
65
10204
Across Europe In A Caravan!
66
9758
Learning The Local Ways Of Addis Ababa
67
11645
A Love Affair with Shanghai
68
11996
Daring to Go Solo in Ireland
69
12058
Architectural Adventures in Australia
70
11845
Hospitality and Hosting in the DCR
71
15333
A Literary Education in the UK
72
14088
An Eye-opening Experience Teaching in South Korea
73
14483
Finding Home, By Teaching Abroad
74
14594
Growing Abroad: Hong Kong & South Korea
75
15347
12 Months, 12 Countries!
76
15383
Hustle and Bustle in Vietnam
77
15327
An Open Mind & Open Arms in Spain
78
15387
Bliss on a Budget in Brazil
79
15644
Discovering the World on Campus: International Skills at Home
80
11467
Stepping Outside the Box in Sweden!
81
9752
Giving In Guatemala
82
9769
Getting Sporty In Switzerland!
83
9788
Business And Pleasure In Australia
84
9787
A Spring Semester in London
85
9807
Fast Friendship in Korea
86
11557
Un stage au Cambodge (Français)
87
10230
Getting Caffeinated In Bolivia
88
11468
Learning While Teaching in Beijing
89
10145
Real Stories And Real People In Mexico
90
9803
Ten Years Teaching In Seoul
91
10851
Tips From Tasmania
92
9799
Getting Settled In Seoul
93
10258
Encountering Cultures Across Europe
94
10218
Adaptation And Appreciation In Japan
95
9812
Caring And Career Skills In Belize
96
10157
Changing Course In China
97
11850
The Warmest Welcome in Guatemala
98
11904
Enthusiasm, Education and Experience in Greece
99
10163
English Teaching In Eastern Europe
100
10192
Out And About In Paris
101
10143
A Warm Welcome In Mexico
102
9760
All Job Boards
460
All NGOs
1434
Au Pair Resources
40
Awards And Grants Resources
58
Business Directories
21
Canadian Federal, Provincial And Territorial Government Profiles
60
Canadian Government Resources
31
Children And Families Abroad
17
Consulting, Economic And Finance Job Boards
63
Country Guides
91
Cross-cultural Skills
83
Engineering Job Boards
62
Engineering Resources
78
Expatriate Networking Sites
36
Foreign Students Working in the US
10
Freelancing Abroad
27
General Job Search Books
17
Global Education And Social Action
53
Health And Medicine Job Boards
52
Health Career Resources
68
International Associations With Clubs on Campus
43
International Development Career Resources
84
International Internship Organizations
314
International Internships And Student Programs With Canadian Governments
35
International Internships With The US Government
38
International Job Hunting Resources
17
International Law Careers Resources
114
International Law Job Boards
28
International Studies In The US And Canada
11
International Trade Resources
23
International Volunteer Organizations
496
Internship Directories And Advice
51
Internships With The UN And Other IGOs
159
Language Careers
34
Learn A Language
114
Licensed Teacher Abroad Job Boards
36
Licensed Teacher Abroad Resources
40
Loans for Studying Abroad
18
Low-cost Travel
75
NGO Directories
34
NGO Job Boards
51
Re-entry
12
Regional Job Boards
110
Relocating Abroad
29
Resources For International Students Studying In Canada
17
Resources For International Students Studying In The US
48
Stories From Abroad
102
Study Abroad Resources
194
Teach English Abroad Job Boards
104
Teach English Abroad Resources
77
Tools for Travelers
78
Top International Blogs & Podcasts
86
Travel Health And Safety
52
UN and Other IGOs
271
UN And Other IGOs Job Boards
27
UN And Other IGOs Resources
75
US Government Profiles
76
US Government Resources
42
Virtual International Internship Organizations
93
Visas and Passports
31
Volunteer Directories And Advice
63
Women Living And Working Overseas
19
Working Holiday Resources
79