Connect-123

Connect-123

About

Connect-123 develops and administers internship programs in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Cape Town, South Africa; Shanghai, China; Dublin, Ireland; Sydney, Australia; and Barcelona, Spain. In all countries, internship opportunities are hosted by local companies, non-profit organizations, schools, research institutes and health care clinics.

Reviews

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Zachary
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The coveted internship during/after your junior year of college was beginning to seem out of the question due to COVID-19. After expressing concerns to my advisor, he suggested I contact Connect123- they did the rest. They managed to find me an international internship that not only aligned with my interests, but was flexible around my university schedule. Genuine support from the organization was evident, providing weekly meetings to discuss our experiences and develop skills, along with immediate email responses to any questions. I would highly recommend utilizing the people at Connect123 to help you reach your internship goals.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
Immediately engage with my supervisor! We've developed a good personal relationship and I should have started that sooner.
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Anna
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Connect-123 looked at my dream internship and made it a reality. With my passion for language exchange, economics, and law, Connect-123 placed me with a highly respected legal-economic think-tank in Madrid. It was everything I could have asked for! On top of the amazing placement process, the Connect-123 team always made me feel supported, with weekly workshops on how to succeed and get the most out of my internship, and genuine one-on-one check-ins from my coordinators. Connect-123 is truly the best opportunity to come my way during my entire college experience. This is an amazing organization that I would recommend to everyone!

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Sasha
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Connect-123 planned an incredible internship for me. I had an amazing experience interning with an architectural office in Barcelona. I worked on 3D modeling, drawing, and contributed to the production of Virtual Reality and project proposal. I enjoyed the internship and I felt even more passionate about working in the architecture field. Connect-123 really helped make this virtual internship experience possible and meaningful. I was able to communicate smoothly with my advisor and Connect-123. This internship has provided me an incredible opportunity to learn, participate, and have fun, even under the situation of Covid-19.

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Allie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had planned on interning abroad over the summer but was unable to due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, my university’s study abroad office told me about Connect-123 and I decided to apply right away. Connect-123 was so helpful with finding an internship that was the right fit for me. Throughout the entire internship process, Connect-123 made sure to check in on me and see how things were going- this really helped me build a solid foundation with my supervisor and with the Connect-123 community. There were always seminars and even some online social events that you could get involved with as much or as little as you wished. I loved these events and tried to go as much as I could as it was a great way to network and stay connected during the pandemic. Having the opportunity to work remotely has taught me a lot about myself both personally and professionally. The ability to work internationally during such unprecedented times was what made me choose Connect-123. Working internationally versus domestically has enhanced my career opportunities: expanding my understanding of cultural diversity and further developing my language skills. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to intern through Connect-123- I know that my semester would not have been the same without it.

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Jacqueline
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Spoiler alert: applying for the Connect-123 virtual internship was the best decision I have made this year.
I was heading towards the end of my master’s in International Human Rights Law and, while I was looking for career opportunities abroad, the pandemic restricted my options and hopes like for many of us. I then discovered the Connect-123 virtual internship programme and I applied thinking that I did not have anything to lose, and I am so glad I did!

Due to some complications related to the pandemic, I could not land an internship in my first choice destination but they instead found an opportunity that was far greater than I expected when I applied in the first place. I was thrilled as soon as I saw the offer to work in law reform and that’s when I understood how thoughtful the members of Connect-123 are, and how they make sure that the position matches your skills, your future goals, and what you are looking for in this experience. Not only did they find a perfect opportunity that I would not have found on my own, but they also provided me with great support during the whole duration of the internship. I highly recommend it!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Connect-123 really cares and will help you find the perfect opportunity for you. Apply now! :)

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Josh is a Senior at CU Boulder studying International Affairs, Spanish, and Russian. This past semester he completed an internship in Buenos Aires with the Provincial Government working with the Department of Sustainability and Social Responsibility.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose this program because I didn't want to just study abroad. I wanted to do something more. More involved, more intense, and more rewarding (in my opinion that is). And really I wanted to experience working abroad, in a foreign language (my internship was 100% in Spanish). And Connect-123 provides that infrastructure does just that.

What did your program provider (or university) assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

My university didn't assist with anything. So everything was dealt with by me and the program provider (Connect-123). Connect helped secure housing, and also put me in contact with various host organizations from which point I interviewed directly with them, and then selected my internship from there. I organized travel to and from Buenos Aires, and all the travel I did within Argentina was organized by me as well. Connect organizes weekly social events, and also organizes airport transport to your housing when you arrive, which is a great help.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Be prepared for anything! Keeping an open mind and having little to no expectations is the best advice I can give. Because by doing this, you aren't limiting yourself to anything, and instead keeping the experience wide open. Because the odds are that most things won't be exactly how you imagined them, and that is A-ok. That is part of the richness of working/studying abroad, is that you experience things you never anticipated!

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

Because of the fact that almost every participant has a different internship, there really isn't any such things as an average day. For me personally an average day was getting to the office at 10 am, working until 2 or 3, then a lunch break, then back to work until 6 or even as late as 9 pm before heading home on the metro (subte). Some days I would travel to La Plata (the capital city of the province of Buenos Aires) for meetings. I worked this schedule Monday thru Friday.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

My biggest fear coming into the experience was that my internship wouldn't be a good fit, and I wouldn't gain the valuable professional experience that I was looking for. It turns out, this fear was realized! My first internship was not a good fit, and was not going to be an environment in which I could thrive and do that type of work I was interested in.

Instead of sitting idly by and waiting for the semester to end, or waiting for an internship miracle of some kind, I decided to change my situation. Connect-123 helped me find a new host organization, and ultimately I ended up working with the Province of Buenos Aires. Which turned out to be the best internship I could have imagined! Moral of the story is, yes sometimes (often times) things do not go as we have planned them to. That is ok, because amazing things can come from challenging and difficult situations, and make us more resilient in the process!

Is Buenos Aires dangerous?

This is a question that I hear and receive a lot. My answer would be no, it is not more or less dangerous than any major city around the world. It is good always be aware and cognizant of your surroundings, but I personally never had any issues with safety. If this is your main concern for participating in this program, I would say that yes Buenos Aires is a big city, but it should not stop you from coming and enjoying all that it has to offer!

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Nikki Madden

Job Title
Dublin Program Coordinator

Nikki joined Connect-123 after years of adventures, teaching, and projects abroad. After finding a job that helped other people to navigate new adventures, travels, and dreams, she willingly hung up her boots to help others experience the magic that is Ireland!

What is your favorite travel memory?

This is a toughie! Just one?!

Baby turtles hatching on the beach in India. Baby seals playing in rock pools in New Zealand. 36-hour train journeys in India. Amazing hikes in Nepal. Learning to sail in Australia. Tuk tuk journeys in Thailand. I've also had some great memories from teaching abroad! Some of the best times of my life!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

This role has allowed me to develop my leadership and mentorship skills in a much stronger way. It has given me a chance to use my abilities and experiences to help navigate others and be a support in their own development.

I'm also constantly learning through my students about new and exciting things as well as developing how we work with students, companies, and events.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I hear great stories all the time. I'm very proud of all the students here. Whenever I worry about the state of things in the world, I think about all our students who were always aiming for great things!

Recently, one of our students told me she got accepted into NASA, which was a massive dream of hers, just a few short months after they went home from Ireland! Massively proud as punch!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would love to go to South Africa as I've never been anywhere that looks like it. I'd want to do all those adventure activities –rock climbing, shark diving, trekking, go on Safari, see Table Mountain, sunshine, and get to Stellenbosch for some wine tasting!!

We've also got some amazing connect people there, and some really exciting projects! Ah bliss, it looks amazing!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

For me, Connect-123 is a very special company. From the word go, they were supportive, nurturing and caring, and they built a fantastic environment and atmosphere for our team globally.

This feeling is what I think is passed on with us! We may be many kilometers apart, but we all get the sense that we are a team working towards a common goal.

When we all get together, it's lots of fun! I'm very happy and proud to be part of this family!

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

I think the biggest factor in a successful company is passion, and loving what you do! I also think that as a company, we thrive on helping young people do amazing things in their lives, and to show them what is possible!

The youth of today are looking for experiences that help them see a better world. I like to think that our company is successful because we want to help empower these visions!