The artifacts that I'll be showing to my advisory are all the projects I've worked on. I have mentioned them before and it includes: my trifold board, poster, flyer, and possibly the school PowerPoint I've been working on. I think I'm just going to put together a PowerPoint for my final presentation.
1. How was your work as an intern meaningful to your education and personal growth?
2. How did your view of life beyond high school change or develop during your time as an intern?
3. How did communication and/or collaboration at work influence your understanding of professional working environments?
As an intern, I have learned a lot! Not only have I learned a lot at work, but I've also learned a lot about work. So far, I had the chance to dabble in coding which is part of a graphic designer's job; I learned (on my own ^.^) how to use Microsoft Publisher to make flyers; I've developed marketing skills; and of course, I have learned many things about Chinese culture. Personally, I've gained an understanding of things to do in the future and I'm trying to get the hang of it now. Like time management, being professional, perfection does not come right away, and thinking on your feet. I have back stories about all of them.
I had some ideas about what I wanted to do after I graduate, but I never had any set plans. However, this experience really opened my eyes. It's not that I have found something I'm passionate about, it's that I know what I don't want to do. Don't get me wrong, it's been a pleasure to work for the Confucius Institute. For the past month I've done a lot of working behind a computer; 6 hours a day. Besides the arts and crafts of it, all I do is sit (and do work of course). I knew before hand that I didn't want to grow up to work in an office, but why say before act? Since I've had this opportunity, I know for sure that the office life is not for me. One of the things I was thinking about as a potential job is actually graphic designing, but when I learned how to do coding... it was hard and very tedious. Something I did not expect. So graphic designer is off my list. It's better that I know early on and I am glad to have had this internship to realize that.
Well, I found that I really do need to speak up more often. At times I feel really uncomfortable about speaking up because the office is so quiet and I feel out of place. But, I'm getting a tiny bit better at making small talk and interacting with my coworkers. If I worked here longer I would definitely be more open, but since it's only been a month and I'm a pretty shy person I've been more reserved than anything. It's also not so professional when you're quiet like me since in this job you have to be good at public speaking, get people interested in what you're presenting, and even answering the phone. But now I know.
Your responses to these two questions need to be detailed and reflective.
1. How was your work significant or meaningful to your workplace?
2. How did your project(s) go from an idea or inspiration to a final product? Explain the processes from the initial idea to the final product and the skills that you used and developed.
I would say my work is very significant to my workplace. The projects they gave me were to help promote things for their events. Since they promote Chinese culture I focused a lot on the Zodiac, Chinese New Year, and Cultural activities. But for the company, I've made flyers, a trifold board, a school presentation, and posters that they can use long after I leave which is beneficial for them.
Most of the time, my mentor would say "We want you to do this project... First brainstorm ideas and then try some things out." So in the beginning, that is what I would do. I wrote down my idea or sketched it out. Afterwards, I would start doing whatever I needed to do to get it done. For the trifold board, I started off with researching each of them, then making a small design for what I thought they should look like. It took me a long time! I just wanted them all to be perfect. The first draft were oval-shaped but technology didn't want to work with me so they didn't look right. Then I changed it to rectangles but that took me about 3-4 different versions and edits to make them look nice. Even after they were done I was told they could have looked better. But, that went for all my products. It started off as an idea, then it needed edits and peer reviews, but after time and determination, it pays off to see the finished product. That is a skill that I have developed; patience. It takes time to make something perfect, but when it's finalized, you feel good that it came out better than you thought. I also learned that even though something might look good to you, others might point out a good flaw or give you some advice and if you take it, it is for your own good because it helps out in the end.
I feel like the whole "I'm going to work" thing is still surprising to me. In my perspective the work weeks go by fast and even weekends are going by quickly! But, I like that there is no homework when I get home I just relax, sleep, work, relax, sleep, work, and so on. It is a very independent lifestyle and different than when you are in school working with everybody. You go to school, talk to friends, learn, get lectured, and it is very interactive. In contrast, I'm at work and they ask me to do a project. I'm basically alone because I have the freedom to do what I want, but if they don't like it, I have to do a lot of revision or even forget it and move on. Even my breaks aren't at a certain time, which is weird to me. In school you follow a schedule and your mind is typically all over the place thinking about biology class, then math, then English, whereas I have all day to do just one project until I'm done with it. So in retrospect, it is very different.
To be honest, I think has helped me find out what I do and don't want in life. For example, I didn't realize what graphic designing was and that was one of the things I said that I wanted to do when I grow up. Then, I got the chance to do some of it at work and I know that it is NOT for me. So I'm learning a lot both educationally and physically and I am glad to have had this experience!
So today I checked out Teris, Jazmin, and Kotae's blogs and they all seem like they are having a good time. I realized that we are all getting meaningful experiences and we're learning a lot about what it's like to be an independent, young adult. It's cool to see how other people are doing while we are away from each other.
It's like my second or third week of being at my internship and I like it for the most part, but sometimes it gets awkward... or at least uncomfortable. There are a lot of small things that make me feel like an ...outsider I guess. A big reason is because all my coworkers speak Chinese to each other and when I try to learn they all laugh because I can never say anything right. And another thing is that I think that they all think I'm mexican which is just a little awkward since I am a fellow asian and I get where they are coming from (because they're all from out the country but so are my grandparents and I understand the cultural differences). They asked if I was fluent in spanish... haha Anyways, like I've said before, it's a small office and every tiny noise seems so amplified. These situations aren't that bad but in my mind they kind of are. For instance, I don't really eat breakfast and at times I have little to no lunch at all. When it's really quiet, my stomach growls loud and sometimes people who sit next to me look at me funny. However, I know how to hide it a little by clicking my mouse or typing random stuff and now it's less weird because I've heard other peoples stomachs through the silence so I guess I'm not alone. (:
It's been at least a week that I've been at my internship. So far, I have had a few little projects. I needed to research the Chinese Zodiac for my first task. When I was done I made small descriptions of each animal along with a cute picture (that's what my mentor instructed ^_^). I also made promotional flyers for the Confucius Institute at SDSU booth for the Chinese New Year fair downtown. Currently, I am working on designing a trifold board for the new year's booth and I included the zodiac descriptions and a paragraph about the significance of the animals. This is my main focus. I have to prepare for Chinese New Year and make sure I know my information because people are going to ask about things. In addition to the trifold board with the zodiac animal descriptions, I get to design the whole board. They really give me freedom to do what I want without being influenced by them. However, I need to check to see if my designs are good enough. The first time I show my mentors it's never perfect. Sometimes I get a little nervous just because I want it all to be perfect. But I've found that advice, criticism, and feedback make the product way strong when you're done. When you get new perspective it is a real eye-opener. I am excited to do more designing and for the events coming up. I'm really learning a lot of lessons that are beneficial for my purposes and I think that I can help represent the company in a good way.
- I also get to do face painting for the fair which I'm also very excited for!! (:
The office I work in is very, very small. My desk is in the corner of the room, and there are 2 people to my right and 2 people behind me. Everyday I look at the hippo stickers at my desk and the big Chinese scrolls that are behind my computer. The rest of the office is decorated with some awards, cultural Chinese stuff, and pictures. But for the most part, I stare at my computer screen for hours. Every once in a while I get up to get a drink of water or go to the bathroom because I was told that it isn't good to sit in one spot for a long time. Yeah, there's the visual for you. Also, I knew that I only had to work 6 hours, but the first 2 days I didn't realize that I had worked 8 hours! I fixed it so now I work Monday through Friday, 10 A.M. - 5 P.M.
Here are some pictures of my internship site:
Who have you interacted with besides your mentor that you think you can learn from? Describe who, what they do, and why/what do you think you will learn from him/her.
Well, the office is reallyyy small so I've met everyone. I have 6 co-workers! I haven't worked on projects with any of them yet but I hope that I will later this month. They are all very nice! Honestly, I hope I learn a lot more about Chinese culture, not only from research but also from my co-workers. I have already begun learning more about their culture and they have tried teaching me some Chinese words. We all work in the same area on the computers and since they're all so friendly I should be able to ask them more questions after I leave my shyness behind. (:
What are you most excited about your internship and why? And at the same time, what are you most nervous about and why?
I am excited to bring art and creativity in what I do to my work. I was told that it would really be helpful and I could probably work on designing posters. However, I'm also nervous to be starting my first day of work. I'm not sure what I will be doing all day but I am up for whatever comes my way.