Hello, my name is Yasemin Derebasi. Currently I am studying International Relations in the Rhine Waal University of Applied Sciences in Germany. I decided to make a voluntary internship in order to gain experience and skills in the field of NGO´s. On the internet I found the offer from ACOPIA and I knew instantly that this was what I was looking for: an internship in an NGO in Korea. Since I study International Relations, I find it very interesting to have an insight in different cultures and to analyze differences between Asian and European lifestyles, working conditions and cultures. So I came to Korea.
During my first month of internship I was mainly assigned to promote the internship in ACOPIA and also the ACOPIA House. This includes taking care of the social media platforms and contacting other companies to establish cooperation- within or outside Asia. As stated on the website, interns have to be able to work under minimal supervision, which means they have a lot of responsibilities and are allowed to make decisions for the company in terms of promotion.
Another activity was the 1:1 language class. I was teaching English to Koreans twice a week. The language classes are an offer from ACOPIA to Korean people, who want to practice their English by having conversations with foreigners. This was interesting for me as well since we got the possibility to interact with locals and get to know more about the Korean lifestyle and the culture.
Furthermore, I got Korean classes myself. Once a week I attended the language class in ACOPIA School with a Korean teacher. These classes are also 1.1, i.e. it is very effective, because the teacher only focuses on one student. Besides the language courses ACOPIA also offers the interns to participate in the K-Pop dance classes.
In the second half of my internship, I started getting tasks with more responsibility. Each intern is assigned to have duty work once a day, i.e. during this day the intern will take care of the office work related to other incoming interns. This includes answering e-mails, doing research about the questions, picking interns up on the day of their arrival and guiding them for the beginning and also other tasks related to the internship program in ACOPIA.
The atmosphere in the office was very friendly and overall I enjoyed my internship in ACOPIA. I gained first experiences in an NGO, had responsibilities, learned a lot about the Korean culture and lifestyle and made many international friends.