Case study

Absolute intern — Vedant Gupta

Vedant studied BSc Business and Management (Accounting) At Brunel University, London. After his first year of study he decided to head over to Hong Kong with Absolute Interns for some valuable work experience

What were you looking for in your placement?

I was hoping for a great experience in Hong Kong. I wanted to learn about the different working culture and immerse myself in another work environment to gain a border view of businesses in the country.

What attracted you to the company?

Absolute Internship appealed to me because it matches talented university students and graduates with international work placements in elite cities around the world. Internships are available in a variety of industries from fashion to the legal sector.

With over 50 university partnerships and over 500 host companies around the world, they help you to stand out from the crowd, boost your confidence and step outside your comfort zone to gain important skills that employers are seeking.

Their goal and mission is to inspire you to succeed through their programme, by meeting ambitious, driven and international-minded students, as well as influential industry experts and successful business leaders in world-class cities overseas.

How did you find out about the placement and what was the selection process like?

I discovered the company through a seminar given by my college. A member of the Absolute team told us about the company and the opportunities that they offer to students.

The application process is straightforward:

  • first you apply online - simply fill in the application form and upload your CV;
  • Absolute then review your application - this is to determine your suitability to the programme. If successful you'll be invited for a telephone or a Skype interview;
  • next is the interview stage - the interview takes 15 to 20 minutes. Absolute assess your career goals, interests in the foreign country you have applied for and your suitability to the programme;
  • you then learn the interview outcome - two to three days after your interview you'll be informed of your application outcome by email. If you are successful you'll receive an acceptance letter, which will formally invite you to the programme and contain details on how to confirm your spot;
  • finally you'll confirm your place - spots are competitive for internship programmes so successful applicants will need to confirm their place in on the programme.

How did you find the transition from study to work?

The experience was different from what I had expected but it made me realise my full potential and has provided me with essential skills and an inside view of the working environment.

I also believe my ability to network and my general communication skills have vastly improved because of the internship.

I've also really progressed on a personal level, as I believe that the experience in Hong Kong has given me the confidence to do new things. The internship pushed me out of my comfort zone but it’s one of the best decisions I've made.

What was a typical day like?

It was a usual 9am to 5pm internship. I worked on a development plan for the company and compared it with its competitors. I was writing more than 50 pages a day. The things I was researching were not abstract, they were used by my boss.

What did you enjoy about your programme?

I enjoyed making friends from different parts of the world and exploring a new city.

The people that I was with, including fellow interns, made the transition to working in new city much easier as it was a shared experience between us all.

Hong Kong is completely different from the UK and has vast cultural differences.

How did the experience benefit your career?

The programme has brought tangible value and benefits to my career. It has enabled me to build up an important network of industry contacts. Through the lectures and guest speaker series run by the Absolute Internship team I have been able to get a peek inside some of the world's most reputable firms, from Bloomberg to IKEA. I have had the opportunity to talk to professionals about their career journey and the obstacles that their businesses have faced in Hong Kong and what strategies they use to adapt their business model to the local business culture.

The experience has also given my CV a boost as I stand out from the crowd thanks to my international internship.

What advice would you give to other students who are planning work experience?

Maintain an open-minded attitude towards learning. There are so many benefits to an international internship; I loved every minute of the programme.

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