Hello, my name is Jessica Ratcliffe, and I am a second year BSc Biomedical Sciences student. As I am interested in perusing science communications in the future, I was looking for an opportunity over the summer to get some work experience where I could link my degree knowledge to a real company or charity- which is why the Think Pacific Virtual Internship appealed to me so much! The global health branch allowed me to explore how real issues in science and health need to be dealt with an overcome by NGOs and charities in Fiji.
The first part of the internship focussed on learning about Fijian culture which allowed me to connect to the people and the place that all the interns would be working with. It involved weekly ‘culture sessions’ where I was able to learn about Fijian music, food, clothing, and tradition, which was such a fascinating experience!
The action project I chose was with Fiji’s childhood cancer support organisation where I was asked to make a newsletter to raise awareness of the early signs and symptoms of childhood cancer and build a stronger relationship with their stakeholders. I was the first intern to be partnered with this organisation, so it was heart-warming to see how work I did made a real impact for an amazing cause. After I completed my project, I was able to record my presentation to send to the organisation, which was brilliant experience when preparing for my final year of my degree.
The programme was flexible so I could work to my own schedule and could still work my part-time job on the side which was really important to me. It also allowed me to make connections with like-minded individuals and was a great networking opportunity.
If you are thinking of completing a virtual internship with Think Pacific in the future, these are some of my tips:
- Attend the skills workshops. They cover subjects such as presentation skills, time management and teamwork which are useful throughout the internship and in the future!
- Plan your time. The upside of virtual internships is that your time is your own, but this means that you have to take control of your own schedule.
- Take your time to think about which action project you chose and think about what skills you would like to develop.
- Engage with the culture sessions and the discovery phase, this makes all the difference when creating an action project that will actually make a difference.
I would highly recommend the Think Pacific virtual internship for anyone looking to get some remote work experience and make a real impact!