Intern Insight : Steven's Internship Experience in Colombia
Updated: Mar 27, 2019
Hi, my name is Steven Garman, I’m from Manchester, England and undertook my internship with Intern Colombia in 2017. I interned with a small start-up in Bogota. Before undertaking the internship, I had the intention of going to learn Spanish and get real life experience in the business world. Because of Intern Colombia and the internship I have both. Everybody in both companies were so welcoming to me and wanted to help me settle in as quickly as possible. And what I will take away from my time at my internship are the day to day operations and relationships required to build strong partnerships between companies. A plus from working in small start-up is to really see how the business functions day to day and how everybody was part of the team for the greater good.
I had already backpacked South America the year earlier so was accustomed to Latino culture. But nothing can compare to fully living day in and out the Colombian culture. And this is the best part. I got to see the happiness, warmth and generosity of the Colombian people. And how proud they are of this thriving country. A tainted past they may have had, but their future looks bright.
As for my time in Colombia. I can’t recommend it highly enough. From the large Metropolis of Bogota with its culinary world which is quite extensive with some extremely famous restaurants, none more so than Andres Carne de Res in Chia, and its equally impressive bar and nightlife scene. Which seem 24/7 and are the perfect way to immerse yourself within Colombia and understand how these people are so happy and positive. It was a real pleasure to be there to witness it all. All of this may have happened whilst drinking their famed Aguardiente. A must try when in Colombia. I visited the largest Salt Cathedral in the world in Zippaquira, I also visited Medellin, a stunningly beautiful city, tried to learn to dance salsa, but failed. Its honestly easier to learn a new language. The paisas are a proud people and take great pride in their city. So, it was always a joy to visit and watch them dance salsa and drink aguardiente at every opportunity. Whether in the streets or in clubs everyone was moving and happy. Furthermore, what doesn’t get as much attention, but nonetheless are stunningly beautiful are the small colonial towns I visited, each one has its own defining charming characteristic be it their coffee, colourful buildings or just spectacular views, from the likes of Guatape, Salento and the Valle de Coccora to Filandia and Villa de Leyva. All should be visited if you have the chance. And the coffee. Well, its famous for a reason.
I was lucky enough to stay with a Colombian family in Bogota. And they treated me like their 4th son and because of this I joke and say they basically adopted me. They had 3 other children all of which were my age, so on my free time I usually spent it with them, going out to local parties and meeting some of their friends. Which was nice, but also what was nice is the other group of interns that Intern Colombia had. It was great to be able to share stories and drinks with other interns, and it became like another small family to have whilst being in Colombia. We would go to football matches together which were incredible because I’ve never seen so many passionate people about the clubs they support, it was quite incredible.
I can’t thank Intern Colombia enough, for bringing me to Colombia and integrating me within the Colombian culture. From playing Tejo - not too dissimilar from the American sport cornhole, but this national sport involves alcohol, metal bricks and gunpowder - to the wonderful tour de la fruta to name but a few. A tour run by a local lady that is enormously proud of her country and its variety (of fruits). I learnt whilst on the tour they have more than 400 varieties of fruit, and I was luckily enough to sample many. Mangostinos are still my favourite. And because of these wide variety, fruits are had with every meal, in the form of jugo naturales. A delicious drink with natural fruit from this wonderful country. Jugo de Guanabana may be hard to pronounce but its delicious.
So, I would recommend anybody thinking about interning in Colombia as a definite must do. You will be welcomed with open arms and you will leave feeling part Colombian I am sure.
If you would like to know more about Colombia or what it's like to do an internship in Latin America.
Please contact a member of our team.
This blog post was published by Intern Colombia on 07 February 2019 and written by our Intern Colombia Alumni - Steven. This post has only been edited for grammatical purposes.