Salome was able to be part of a multicultural team in the Big Apple while also learning more about American culture with her host family.
When I started my internship at One To World, I was expecting it to be a learning experience both professionally and culturally; I had no idea what an adventure I was about to embark upon! As a member of the ‘Enrichment Programs Team’ that organizes programs and services to help international students experience New York City, I have had the opportunity to gain in-depth insights into the city and local culture by co-leading our programs. For example, in October we organized a walking tour of Harlem and it was an incredible opportunity to learn more about the history and culture of the neighborhood I live in, beyond the common stereotypes. More recently, we organized an Employment Workshop that was specifically designed for international students and led by a professional international business consultant; I learned valuable tips on how to stand out during job or internship interviews and what employers in the U.S. are looking for in a candidate.
Thanks to my internship, I am fully immersed in an international environment both by working with a mainly American team, which helps me to understand American culture, and by interacting daily with students from around the world. I feel that this experience, which is unique in every way, allows me to be more creative, flexible and thorough in my work while being able to thrive in diverse environments.
While all of the programs this fall have been amazing, my favorite experience has been my homestay with an American family in Lancaster, PA over Thanksgiving. Being an international student in a city as big as New York can be hard at times, especially when it comes to making local friends. By spending one of the most traditional American holidays with locals, it helped me get a closer look at American culture and connect with American people.
Over the course of the trip I discovered the friendliest people, beautiful landscapes and a culture completely different from what I’m used to in New York City. The area is also unique because of the large Amish population that lives in and around the community. Our families made us, myself and my fellow students, feel like part of their families and warmly welcomed us into their homes. Even though it was only a four-day trip, we bonded deeply and it was very hard to say goodbye. I connected so much with my host family that they invited me to spend Christmas with them this year! I couldn’t be happier as it’s going to be my first Christmas away from home. Thanks to my American family, I’m now looking forward to these festivities again!