Nikolay Kolev

Neal Fantom
20th January 2012
Brent Ripka
20th January 2012

My internship with CRCC Asia was an incredible experience for me. It allowed me to achieve my long-time dream to visit China and to combine my time there with a practical and meaningful internship. As a university student close to graduation, I started thinking more and more about the life after I was done with my studies, and, thus, I started looking for an internship that can both teach me something and look good on my CV. Then, I came across CRCC Asia and thought doing the program and doing it in China would be a great thing for me. I applied, was successful and CRCC Asia delivered.

I got an offer for an internship in the funding division of a renowned international NGO. In retrospect, I was particularly happy at that position, because it allowed me to see the entire work process in the NGO: all the work that all other divisions were doing would inevitably go through the funding division in the shape of project proposals to potential or long-term donors. Due to the fact that my division was predominantly international and the other divisions were mostly Chinese, the atmosphere in the office seemed to incorporate the best of Chinese and Western work practices, and it was a very enjoyable environment to work in.

Then, there was the free time, and Beijing definitely is a fun place to be when it comes to that. If you are organized or know someone who can help you make arrangements, you can travel weekends and discover other cities and areas of China. I could not travel much, but, still, after two months of exploring Beijing, I continued finding new things to do and interesting places to visit. There are lots of great historic and cultural landmarks, the cuisine is great (and so very cheap), and nightlife is pretty much the same as anywhere around the world although there is a pretty big and fun expat community.

In the end, I have to say, the whole experience comes down to what motivation you have coming in and whether that changes, how happy you are with your job, and where and with whom you decide to spend your nights and weekends. I felt all those things aligned well for me, so my internship in China is definitely an experience I will remember for a long time.