Thomas Tung, London Internship

London Bridge with crowdInterned at a company called Thriev, a start-up company that specializes in private chauffeur service.

Internship: Thriev is Kind of like Uber, but they use all electric vehicles and their target market is mostly corporate customers. I was a graphic design and social marketing intern for them. Projects included creating new websites, finding optimal solutions for the phone network, managing Google AdWords to promote job listings and the company’s services, etc.

I learned: From my time abroad, I learned to trust my instincts more. You go abroad to experience a new culture, create new memories and build new friendships. You’re living life and enjoying every moment of it, but you realize you should acknowledge that little voice in your head or that gut feeling. It can help you get out of sticky situations if you ever encounter them. Also, you learn to respect different cultures. Living in London for three months makes you realize that you’re not just a tourist in a foreign country.You’re living in a different country where there is a different culture than America. Traveling and studying abroad allows for a student to embrace the lifestyle of the community that hosts him/her.

I was surprised by: I learned that British people ‘work to live’ which is the opposite of Americans who ‘live to work.’ It’s not to say that British people are not hard working. They are extremely hard workers. They just understand that work is not what life is all about. They care about downtime, and spending that downtime with friends and family.

The hardest part: The hardest part was getting adjusted into the English culture. It is so different than what it is like in the States. Social norms are different in the UK. Currency is different and at a different value. For the first month or so, you forget that you have to convert all the values into American dollars.

The best part: The best part was meeting new people from the different colleges in the States as well as British people with whom you develop professional relationships. You get to learn and experience education and business from a different perspective. Traveling all over Europe was another plus.

My tip: Keep an open mind, but trust yourself. That is the best way to enjoy your semester abroad.