Thursday chronicles: salary slip

This week with the Eternal Interns…

Yet another week of hectic Eternal Interning! While Flora moves from telephone interviews, to face-to-face interviews in her quest for “Eternal Employment”, Rose gets a taste of reality when she finds out how people really climb up the “job” ladder in her industry! All the while, Ophelia catches up with an old friend from the other side of the pond, who’s clearly left the “Eternal Intern” ring and set to move forward to eternally, blissfully happy married life!

Indeed a busy week for this set of interns…All three trying to move forward despite each facing different obstacles…Flora’s perturbing interviews, Rose’s perplexing realization and Ophelia’s particularly fast-paced friends…3 interns, 3 sets of challenges…

Hello Interns!

I had an interview today for a horrible Eternal Employment position. I knew going in that I wasn’t the least bit interested in the job, but any interview is always a good practice session!

So I get there…I sit down…The typical meet and greet proceeds, followed by the inevitable “please tell me about yourself…” All is good, all is well… and then the interview veers off yet again on a topic that always seems to catch me off guard: the salary dance!

What is funny here, however, is that instead of asking me how much I was expecting, the interviewer asked me, “How much are you making at your current job?” Job?  Full-time position? I guess he didn’t realize that I’m STILL an intern! Actually he clearly didn’t realize that I’m still an intern, as he insisted on the “job” fact…

I sat there, perplexed, with my mind running 100 miles an hour… Should I make up a salary?  Should I tell the truth – but in that case would he judge my Eternal Intern status and rip up my application?

What I did decide to do was not to lie…but not to tell the truth either!  Instead, I looked at him with a strange look and said,  “I’ll have to get back to you…” WTF? As soon as the words left my mouth I began to laugh hysterically on the inside! Who doesn’t know their salary!?!  I’ll tell you who, Eternal Interns who don’t have a salary!  Haha!!

Luckily this gig didn’t interest me in the least and luckily going to this interview prepped me for others!  Sure, perhaps I shouldn’t have accepted an interview I knew very well did not interest me, but at the end of the day, it was great practice and my goodness, what a good laugh! And, honestly, I walked out relatively proud of myself.  I clearly fooled the guy into thinking I’m Eternally Employed… Not too bad for an Eternal Intern!

xoxo Flora


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3 healthy breakfast picks

While an internship is great for the mind, is it really great for the body? You’re working long hours for relatively low to probably no pay at all. This can really take a toll on your health (and your wallet), especially concerning the food that you eat. Grabbing a burger during work is a lot easier than packing a salad or healthy sandwich the night before. Breakfast is obviously one of the most important meals of the day, since every nutritionist and doctor preaches it like an anthem. Bagels and cream cheese are my major weakness, especially when the cream cheese is so abundant that it’s poking out through the bagel hole. But all the carbs and dairy can make an intern really sluggish rather than energetic and exercise can take a backseat when you finish the work day at 7pm and you’ve been on your feet all day. So instead try these healthy breakfast options which are sure to give you an energy boost while keeping that body lean and mean:

Greek yogurt with sliced fruit and Kashi GoLean granola: I am in love with Fage yogurt or even the Chobani brand. Definitely buy the low fat or 1% yogurt because the creaminess is almost sinful. The yogurts are thick and especially filling if you add a bit of granola into it. The fruit is refreshing and cold which can be soothing when you have to wear business black pants on a 90 degree day. Strawberries and blueberries are really great and they both add a little color to the yogurt. If you’re not one for Greek yogurt, go for the Dannon vanilla flavor or even plain.

An egg whites breakfast burrito: A regular bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich is loaded with fat, cholesterol, and guilty feelings. Instead, an egg white burrito or omelet is a healthy alternative. The egg whites are low in calories plus they are chock full of protein. I usually add a bit of goat cheese from the farmer’s market for a creamy flavor. You can add whatever vegetables you want like bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, or even spinach. All you have to do is scramble the egg whites with the veggies and cheese and wrap it in a whole wheat wrap. This makes it a great to-go option.

A fruity protein shake: A shake is really filling and if made right, it might just make you feel like you’re strolling on the beach (probably not). But still, adding some frozen blueberries, peaches, mangos, bananas, or strawberries (go crazy with the fruit) along with a little bit of OJ and water (you can substitute with milk or just water), lots of ice, and some vanilla soy protein powder (from your local GNC or CVS) will make for a very rejuvenating and cool breakfast.

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Thursday chronicles: Meet the eternal interns

Greetings Interns!

My name is Ophelia and I am an Eternal Intern.  With my friends Flora and Rose, we write the blog The Eternal Intern, chronicling our struggles and triumphs as interns in New York, Paris and Los Angeles.  So what makes us Eternal Interns?  The criteria are simple.  We all have Masters degrees from prestigious universities, we speak numerous languages and we have tons, I mean tons, of international internship experience.  Despite our standout resumes, with each job application we submit we get one of two replies 1. “Currently we do not have a position that fits your skills” or 2. “We can offer you an internship”!  What gives?  Since when did good grades, great experience and motivation knock a girl to the back of the line when they are handing out great jobs?  Well, as Eternal Interns, we have vowed not to sit around complain and watch the world pass us by.  Sure, we blog about it, we lament to one another about the hard-knocks of the “real world,” but we also live life to the fullest and take advantage of every opportunity that comes our way!

As I mentioned, the three Eternal Interns are living and working in three very different cities. My love of fashion brought me to Paris years ago, and I have been navigating my way through the ups and downs of job/internship hunting ever since.  I have some magnifique credits to my name, including Vivienne Westwood and Elle but alas, I’m still just an intern!  Rose is our resident movie girl, so it’s only fitting that she is interning her way to the top in Hollywood!  She is about to embark on a Bonnie and Clyde-style American road trip (minus the crime, of course!), taking a well-deserved break after a very demanding internship.  And last but not least, there is Flora, our jack-of-all-trades, who is currently interning in fashion but has tried her hand at everything from finance to art! Flora is our Upper East Side superstar currently interning at a fabulous magazine.  So there you have it; three very different girls with different experiences and goals all in the same situation.

But how will three Eternal Interns distinguish themselves in the sea of ambitious interns all vying for the same (non-existent) jobs?!

Stay tuned to find out!

x  Ophelia

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5 gadgets for every intern

Getting ready for an internship can include buying new business casual clothes, figuring out where you’re going to live, and picking up a few shiny toys (namely the pieces of technology that you insist you can’t live without when begging your parents to swipe that credit card.) It is most likely that every college student has the few of the following essentials that are listed below, but having the latest and hottest piece of technology may give you that upper hand.

  1. Let’s start things off with your basic phone. By now almost every student looking for an internship has the soon to be body appendage, a cell phone. But how do you know which one you should pick? Personally, I have a preference for the iPhone over the Blackberry, but that’s because I love the clean and sleek look with the easy touch screen abilities. The endless applications that allow for access to all the information puts you at the top of your game because with a few taps you can pull up the stats on the latest ratings for that question your boss just asked within seconds, plus playing Paper Toss on the subway ride is always a guaranteed time passer. (3G is $99, 3GS is $199 or
  2. Carrying around a bulky laptop can be a pain in your neck, literally. Several students can now be seen carrying a mini Netbook. These lightweight laptops provide the exact same services as a regular laptop, except at the fraction of the price and weight. It becomes convenient if you’re constantly running around on errands to have a handy little laptop that carries all your work. It is almost inconspicuous at staff meetings with your boss where you can type up any relevant information, or if you’re gutsy enough, indulge in a little Facebook action. (Starting at $250 on
  3. A Bluetooth may look a little pretentious on a college campus but it can really come into handy for an intern on the run. Sticking the little device to your ear can free your hands to type away on your Netbook and juggle four cups of coffee all while walking to your next assignment. Plus the added look of professionalism and business can add a bit of bounce to your intern ego. (Starting at $20 on ebay or
  4. Many people underestimate the great benefits that a good cup of steaming hot coffee can do to a person, especially one that is spill and leak-proof. Having a thermal flask that is heat retaining and durable can always soothe the stressed out soul and reduce your carbon footprint. An added bonus is that almost every coffee place will charge you less for the coffee since you’re not using a paper cup. Try a Contigo Autoseal Stainless Steel Travel Mug which starts at $20.
  5. Walking and staying on your feet can inevitably be a large part of an intern’s life. An uncomfortable pair of shoes and the resulting blister can ruin a day and dried blood never looks good in your $300 leather shoes. Make sure to buy a pair of long lasting, stylish, yet comfortable shoes. But with any shoe, there’s always going to be trouble if you have to stay on your feet for a long time. Try using Dr. Scholl’s rubber inserts and heel grips to give your back a little more support. (Starts at $11, find online or any pharmacy)

-Anjali Joseph

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Eyes wide open: Anna’s volunteer experience

By Anna Jarzebiak

Spring break is often a time for a little rest and relaxation, meeting new people, going somewhere you haven’t been and being labeled that one dreaded word…a tourist.  It would have been nice to have that sand between my toes, an envy-worthy tan and a lounge chair by the ocean, but my spring break wasn’t typical.

My spring break journey took me down to Washington, D.C., the country’s capital; where besides politics there is an overwhelming population of homeless men, women and children.  This weeklong trip would change me entirely, but I didn’t know that yet.

For the first two days we were able to explore our surroundings, venture off into the unfamiliar territories of D.C.  Georgetown was our first tourist attraction– wearing our Syracuse University pride attire might not have been the brightest idea at the time considering the basketball team lost to Georgetown University just a few days prior.  Nonetheless, it became my favorite place to go.  We also visited Chinatown, the White House, all the famous monuments that everyone has to see at least once in his or her lifetime, we saw everything!  Not to mention I encountered several of the housing locations featured on InternCircle, the Carlyle and 2424 Penn! By the end of the trip I disposed of my tourist label and became a professional navigator.

Aside from all time for the attractions and exploring, we worked on several projects throughout the week.  We worked with a group called YSOP (Youth Service Opportunities Project) that allocated several groups to different projects.  Among these projects was working directly with a homeless man and a woman and helped them sell a newspaper called Street SenseStreet Sense is a newspaper written by the homeless to inform the D.C. public of issues that affect the homeless population and are often overlooked.  The papers are then sold for one dollar.  The hardest part about this mission was standing in the pouring rain with newspapers in my hand trying to sell them to passing strangers.  Most people wouldn’t give me a second look or would ignore me.  It might have very well been one of the hardest things to come to terms with, not having my presence acknowledged by another human being.  That same day we went to the DC kitchen where we prepared food that would later be served to 4,500 hungry people.  With Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” playing and some singing and dancing, potato peeling never seemed more fun! It was this very first day that shaped the rest of my week.

The following day we went to Food & Friends, a program that delivers groceries to homes that have family members with terminal illnesses.  At this site we bagged groceries based on each individual person’s dietary needs and helped deliver them to homes.  The next day we went to A Wider Circle where all sorts of clothing, furniture, toys and mattresses are donated and then families who are unable to purchase them on their own can come and choose which items to take to be able to furnish their homes at no cost to them.  The next project we worked on was going to elder residence homes, those of whom were homeless before, to help clean up their apartments.  There was never a dull moment.

The most eye-opening time of my experience came from one of the nights, the night of St. Patrick’s Day, where we actually got to prepare, make and serve a meal to forty homeless people.  We made meat lasagna, vegetable lasagna, salad, garlic bread, mashed potatoes and even cupcakes!  Delicious, right? It sure was, but nothing was as good as seeing the smiles on 40 faces!  This one woman that I had spoken to for nearly two hours changed my life and emphasized to me that life and what you have shouldn’t be taken for granted and that one’s values are what make a person, not what you wear or what you have.  I will never forget these wise words of wisdom.  It also went to show that these people that lead unfortunate lives are by no means inferior to those that “have it all.”

The things I saw, the things I heard and the things I remember will never be forgotten.  The people I met, the experience I had will always, always remain with me.  And even though I missed the beach, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

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Driving the baskets

As a Syracuse basketball fan, I was not looking forward to watching Butler play Michigan State in the NCAA Final Four on Saturday. Just previously, number one-seed Syracuse lost its Sweet 16 match to this bunch of lanky Indiana ball players barely growing facial hair. But barely 10 minutes into the game, I ended up rooting for Butler, more focused on their game more than any other ‘Cuse spectacle this year. Why? They know how to play basketball.

The Butler University bulldogs men’s basketball team has the basics down. They follow through with their shot, play a wicked and practically impenetrable man-to-man defense, and crash the boards for rebounds and strip the opponents off the dribble. Because of this, they don’t have to rely on a reputation or incredible 3-point shooting to win. They win because they play good basketball.

The team, lead by the humble and determined 33-year old coach Brad Stevens reminds me how inspiring it can be to see someone just play good basketball. Of course, there is always a market for dunks and the exceptional players with impending NBA draft picks. But Butler is a testament to the success that comes from hard work and nailing down those basic skills.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the Syracuse Orange laughed at Butler during warm-ups before the West Regional semifinal, jeering that they didn’t size up to the Orange’s grand stature. When Michigan State Coach Tom Izzo’s team lost, he retorted, “They shoot 30 percent.” All this hot air didn’t go anywhere.

When it comes to applications or the work place, you can chose to just bank on a good-looking resume or family connections to get you by, or you can focus on the fundamentals, and do them well. You can choose to be intimidated by people or colleagues who seem to have more star-power than you, or you can plow through it and just keep performing the best you can to sharpen your skills for the next project. Or you can laugh at those who you don’t think have a shot in hell of getting your internship, but then, who’s going to have the last laugh?

By Chelsea Prince (@chelseaprince.) Read more internship-related content at InternCircle,

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Genius at work, graduate intern story

Alex Lindbald started out as a visiting fellow, a Ph. D intern per say, for Sandia National Laboratories, one of the most prestigious engineering and scientific research houses, and was hired full-time within the year. After he received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Minnesota, he received a Master’s and a Ph. D. at the University of Washington. His Master’s thesis was on multiple structural design alternatives in an interactive real-time environment—a finite-element analysis package that can analyze and display the results of two different structures at the same time.

His internship began with a three-month stint in the Enabling Predictive Simulation Research Institute (EPSRI,) where he explored the behavior of silicon micro-needles. He then spent the next three months developing parallel software to run biological-attack simulations. The advancements he made in code development were part of a Laboratory Directed Research & Development project, and the code was later used for further R&D and publications. As such, he was offered a full-time position before his internship had ended. He is now a part of the multiphysics modeling and simulation department at Sandia/California.

He works as a developer for Presto, Sandia’s in-house explicit, transient, dynamic finite-element software package. He says his work is interesting because it is constantly changing. The Presto user community is quick to give him feedback regarding any changes he makes to the code. “I appreciate knowing that my work makes a difference in their lives,” he said.

To future interns, Lindbald’s advice is to make sure you know what you want to get out of your internship. Then tell your overseer what that is before you start and then again during the internship. The more you communicate with your mentor and take an active role in your internship, the more you will get out of your experiences.

-Abraham Schneider

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