For my internship, Puentes did a fantastic job pairing me with Matriarca, a social enterprise partnering with the aboriginal communities of Argentina to combine antique traditions of crafting with modern products and design. The women I worked with are incredibly driven and inspiring, which brought so much life to the culture in the office. The ladies of Matriarca were so devoted to incorporating me into the business that they even brought me along to a 3 day trip to Formosa- a northern province of Argentina to visit an aboriginal community. Their inclusiveness made me feel as if I had my own family away from home. My internship roles were mainly related to email marketing, website analytics, and assisting with ongoing projects and expositions. The Puentes staff offered resume building workshops on how to include your Puentes Intern and overall improvements, which I actually found immensely helpful.
For housing, I was placed in a shared apartment with random individuals for the first 2 weeks, and then as other Puentes interns arrived, they soon moved into the apartment as well. Although I had a few issues with the apartment conditions, the location was PERFECT. Palermo Soho, which is where a lot of restaurants and boutiques are located, is bustling with activities and things to do. My apartment was a 20 minute walk to my internship site, and I never felt unsafe or endangered in any way.
Overall, My Puentes experience was fantastic. I grew so much as a person and learned about the stark differences in business culture compared to the US. With that being said, the type of person who I think will get the most out of Puentes Abroad are those who are independent, can cope with being in uncomfortable situations, and are just eager to explore the unknown. The puentes staff is on call at any time if anything happens, but they are certainly not holding your hand and planning your week for you-- you are really l i v i n g in Buenos Aires. So, as long as you come with an open mind, aware of your surroundings, and excited to speak Spanish and meet new people-- you'll have a blast.
-Buenos Aires has a very strong cash culture, so I recommend bringing at least 2 credit cards with you (in case you forget to take yours out of the ATM, which happened to me twice).
-Pack more sweaters-- Buenos Aires gets a bit colder than you may think and the lack of central heating systems in many buildings makes it feel colder.