My international internship experience in Detroit

The United States is a huge creative hub…

caroline forster iscom

Caroline Forster, ?International Communications Student - ISCOM Paris

For my third internship at ISCOM, I chose to go to the United States because it is where I grew up and I wanted to participate in an "American experience". Since we are in the International program, I thought it would be beneficial to work with another culture. My past internships were both in Europe, in France and the Netherlands. 

My Internship Experience

I am in Detroit, Michigan, working for the Eastern Market Brewing Co., located in the historic Eastern Market Corporation. Which is a historic commercial district in Detroit that opened in 1974. Eastern Market is the largest historic public market district in the United States, and the Eastern Market farmer's distribution center is the largest open-air flowerbed market in the United States and has more than 150 foods and specialty businesses. On Saturdays, about 45,000 people shop the city's historic Eastern Market.
As a PR/Events intern, my daily activities include updating the social media pages, researching the Detroit/micro-brewery market, finding and contacting local influencers, and helping organize internal/external events. I chose this internship for many reasons. After doing two internships "in agency", I wanted to work "in house".

Being a part of Detroit's renaissance is very cool

I come from a family of entrepreneurs, so being able to work in house in a "start up" with a young, dynamic entreprennial team seemed perfect. Plus, this business' vision, mission, and values resonated with me as a person and with the resurgence of Detroit. Finally, it is located in one of Detroit's most historical and influential neighborhoods so being a part of Detroit's renaissance is very cool.  The team, and my mentor, Jacqui, had already sent me many documents about the business and what they were working on. So, on my first day, I met with the team to discuss what I had received. The team really wanted to make sure I understand the business' core values. It is a team project, everyone is hands on so we need to be on the same page. They also asked and listened to what I wanted to get out of the experience (PR, event planning, marketing strategy, etc.). From that day on, we've had very clear communication which is great. 

You can definitely feel the young influence on businesses

In the USA, with the "start up" culture, you can definitely feel the young influence on businesses. Our team especially has a horizontal hierarchy meaning that everyone's roles and ideas are equally important. Even the boss asks me for advice or opinions on some decisions! Although I am an intern, and unpaid, I know that the other team members appreciate my ideas and hard work. 

How ton find an internship in the U.S

I am very fortunate that I have dual-citizenship, so I do not have have to go through the trouble of visas. Plus, my family is here so I have access to housing and transportation.
Many internships in the United States, including my own, are unpaid. So having sufficient funds is a must to live for 3-6 months.
However, the United States is a huge creative hub. I suggest that students do their best to come to intern, work, or travel here at some point in their lives.
Some very young cities that are popular today include Detroit, Boston, Seattle, and Denver. The USA does not only consist of New York, LA, and Miami!