When Kuntal Chatterjee, 26, made a trip to Singapore in 2002, he was on a family vacation meant for shopping and sight-seeing. But come April 30, he will spend a month there, crunching numbers for a Fortune 500 company.
Chatterjee, a first year student of Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies (JBIMS), Churchgate, is among several city students who are travelling to foreign destinations on summer internships this year. “I will be interning with Procter & Gamble in Singapore for two months this summer, where I will work with the finance and accounting team,” said Chatterjee, whose stay and travel will be sponsored by the company. “The work culture in Singapore is known to be extremely efficient, and I am looking to bring back a lot of those values.”
Many students are now looking beyond the country to gain industry experience through foreign internships. For some, like Darshan Kapashi, an internship abroad is a ticket to the head offices of corporate giants. The first year student from IIT Bombay will soon be packing his bags to leave for Palo Alto, California on May 7, for a ten-week internship with Facebook. “I am excited to be working with Facebook, which is currently one of the world’s most sought-after companies. I will get the opportunity to see how the head office actually functions,” said Kapashi. “This is the best way to learn how new technologies are developed.”
Apart from good industry exposure, students are also looking forward to unique cultural experiences during their stay abroad. Srinath Mittapali, 25, a first-year student from National Institute of Industrial Engineering, Powai, will leave for the African continent on April 7. He will intern with a leading luxury car manufacturing company in Botswana for two months. “Many of my friends thought going to Africa for an internship was not a good idea given the crime rate there, but I am looking to learn a lot from my stay in Botswana,” said Mittapali. “I have never been to Africa, and I am excited about exploring the place and meeting the people there.”
And of course, few other things add an edge to a student resume like a foreign internship. “Foreign internships bring international exposure that most companies look for today, since they have offices in various countries,” said Balkrishna Parab, academic coordinator, JBIMS. “This is why students are keen on interning abroad.”
But it’s not all about work for students travelling abroad for internships. “I have heard a lot about the wildlife in Africa, and will definitely going on a jungle safari during my stay there,” said Mittapali.