3 things I learned throughout my internship

Two months ago, my internship with World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific ended and I couldn’t help but feel sentimental. Applying for this opportunity had been one of the best decisions I made throughout my life. During the time I’ve spent with World Youth Alliance, I obtained a wider view of the world. I also realized what I wanted to focus on and discovered concrete ways of achieving my goals. Here are three unforgettable lessons I got throughout my internship:

1. “Human beings are not problems; they are problem solvers.”

If I were asked to further explain WYA’s advocacy, that would be the line I would definitely use. This line really struck my heart because I was guilty of seeing human beings as problems. This could have been the very reason why I became frustrated in my community development efforts. I couldn’t come up with any long-term solution because I didn’t have a thorough understanding of the issues at hand and much worse, I put the blame on the very being that can actually solve problems.

2. “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.”

Vicktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning will be my favorite reading from the Certified Training Program. Not only did it give me hope, but it also taught me how to see things from a different perspective. Thus, creating more room for understanding the human person. This understanding plays a critical role in program and policy development because at the end of the day our primary stakeholders will be the human person.

3. “Surround yourself with sincere individuals who share the same vision as you.”

I didn’t get this from our training manual but this is more of a personal realization. I’ve worked on various community development projects in different groups and organizations. However, an issue would always arise because of misaligned goals. This was very frustrating because aside from causing internal conflicts, we also failed to deliver outcomes for our beneficiaries. This is very different from the atmosphere in WYA. During my short stay with the organization, I couldn’t help but feel at home because I was surrounded by inspiring individuals who worked selflessly in making the world a better place.

My favorite (and most meaningful) photo from the internship. Taken during the #socksbattle4ds campaign.

World Youth Alliance will always have a special space in my heart. Not only did the organization open doors of opportunities for me, but it also showed me that achieving my goals are indeed possible. I had my “What”, “Who” and “Why” but I was having difficulties with my “How”, and WYA was able to provide that for me. Needless to say, being a regional intern for World Youth Alliance – Asia Pacific has been a life-changing experience for me.

By Marianne Bartolome, Batch 1 2018 Intern of WYA Asia Pacific and Certified WYA Member. Marianne recently graduated from University of the Philippines – Diliman with a degree in Business Economics. | Learn more about the WYA Asia Pacific Regional Internship here and have your #BestInternship with us.