Starting from July 9th, and until January 9th, 2013, I’ll be a mechanical engineering intern within a company in Bangalore, India.
I wanted to write this post long ago but decided to wait for my own success or my complete failure to give an appropriate testimonial. Now that I’m in India, now that I’m done with my first day in the company, I feel like it’s time to share with you the tale of my “Incredible India”.
As one of my career goals, I’m intending to build an international consistent profile, an actual mechanical engineer as efficient in her art as in her social commitments towards the world. I won’t roam in the sea of the “why” and the “how come” of that but I want to explain the “how”.
How was I intending to do that? Well, by starting for instance. And in order to start, I saw two paths: it was either carrying some studies abroad or performing internships. I had the opportunity to carry on my studies in France but with all the fuss there and the fact that I didn’t see any added value for my cursus compared to Morocco, I wasn’t motivated and didn’t want to trouble myself and my parents with it. On the other side, the idea of working abroad for some time was more consistent and appealing.
I therefore decided that my final project, the one which will grant me my degree, shall take place outside the kingdom. Therefore, in October 2011, I was browsing through the net, filling up applications, mailing and emailing. I was asking in forums and when the scholar year started, I gathered my translated grades and recommandation letters. I was freaked out in the start and I can easily confess it. It was too much work and I was on my own. But when I started, I was just launched and I was busy keeping up with my emails and registrations.
I was able to have several Skype interviews and managed to get second ones. But either the work I was asked to perform wasn’t related to my interests or the internship was unpaid. I also managed to enroll in an Irish International Internships program called Evergreen and connect with several people within LinkedIn.
One classic reason why my application was refused is that I didn’t have a previous international experience, would it be a two-months internship or a semester abroad. Whereas employees were scared my technical English -because we study in French at Moroccan engineering schools- wouldn’t be good enough or they thought I would grow depressed and elope to my home, this I don’t know. But what I know is while progressing with an internship offer in U.S.A. and another in China, A member of the Edulab team dropped me a message about a possible internship in India.
Come to think about it, I was looking for an internship within Brazil or China mainly because they were emergent countries. I forgot about the others and most importantly about India. Yet India is achieving such a fast global economic growth and ranking third in the world in the IT field. Yet Morocco’s affinity with the Indian culture is so widespread it’s actually a cliché. Yet India hasn’t earned its independance that long ago and is achieving impressive results compared to several old invaders. Yet Indians seem as warm, open and friendly as Moroccans.
It was like being struck suddenly. India would be such a perfect destination! I dropped all the offers once I had a skype interview with Mr. Ambulkar: he was commited, willing to invest his effort and time on me and guaranteeing a colourful result in the end. I started the procedures right after. I enrolled other people as well. I was too excited I wanted to share it with everybody. My parents were supportive and my friends were excited for me as well. Of course, there were some dream killers, some sceptics and others who’d delightfully smile at me while mocking me in my back. There were some who enrolled but weren’t motivated enough and others who were just too lazy or too scared. You’ll get to see so many features of people during such time, you’ll probably get depressed or want to quit or don’t feel like doing it at all. I can understand that: So, to you who’s intending to apply, all I can tell you is to be truly motivated for once you’re launched, no problem will be big enough and no mocking would be noticeable at all. Just go for it with all your might and don’t be lazy about it. Just choose to do it and to fully commit to it!
I had a fair share of skype interviews and opportunities organized by Edulab, but either they didn’t reply or the assignments weren’t “final project” material. As March, the month when I’m supposed to start, was getting nearer and nearer, I was starting to feel anxious. It turned out Edulab needed more time to find a suitable professional internship that would actually meet their safety requirements and standards. So, I dropped it for March with the intention to still carry on for a summer opportunity.
This indeed happened while I was performing my internship in Tangier: The Edulab Team arranged for a phone interview. The company was the perfect fit to what I do and I got the internship! It was as sudden as that in the end.
No, I didn’t need relations or someone’s pleading or help with the papers and so and so. There were only me, my parents’ and friends’ support and the wonderful team of Edulab who is, up to now and for the rest of the internship, monitoring me and looking after the good follow-through of the internship. I can always ask either the Edulab team located in Mumbai or Mr. Christopher about anything. In fact, thanks to these people, my Indian SIM card and my internet connection were arranged within a day and I know now I’m not alone at all in this green city: there are the friends I’m making here and there’s Mr. Christopher and the Edulab Team.
My parents were freaked out. Now that the thing is for real, they felt I was too small for such a big plan. But thanks to the heavy information and contacts that Edulab provides, they were at least assured. Seeing me popping up with two days on Skype and emailing them cooled them down. So yeah, your parents will freak out, specially perhaps because “it’s India”. But as far as I’ve seen, it’s too exagerated and as long as you keep yourself safe like you would do in your hometown, then there’s no worry. You just keep in mind you’re seen as a foreigner and therefore, you pay some attention but nothing to be worried or paranoid about.
I’ll be blogging as much as possible about this delightful opportunity. If you have any question or inquiry, just see with Edulab or mail me at didjay.breakfast.table(at)gmail.com I’d be more than happy to help any soul eager to widen his/her perspective as long as motivation and strong will are there.