Category Archives: Politics and Government

Assistant to the Ambassador – Luxembourgish Foreign Ministry

Universtiy of Exeter Internships, UoE Internships, SCP, SBP, GBP, A2I

What were your main duties and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

There were two parts to my internship. The first one was centered around the State Visit of the Luxembourgish Grand Duke. Here, my main duty was keeping the programme and motorcade plans up to date before the visit, as well as supervising press and luggage affairs during the visit itself. Throughout the whole run-up, I was also assisting the ambassador in any problems he had to resolve. The second part involved an in-depth research of Polish exports and the opportunities that Luxembourgish logistics companies could make a profit from.

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

My biggest achievement must be the close-up view of diplomacy that I got. There are so many little protocol element that I could have only learnt through such an internship rather than through studies.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

Especially for the run-up to and the State Visit itself, my presence was helping my colleagues enormously, which they acknowledged several times during the internship. After the visit, my research piece also gave the Ambassador a more detailled overview of Polish exports than he could have managed to achieve in his tight schedule.

Did you encounter any problems during the course of your internship and if so, how did you overcome them?

While there were no major problems during the internship, there were many little protocol things to which one needs to pay attention in the presence of His Royal Highness the Grand Duke. In order to overcome these uncertainties, I needed to rely on my colleagues and ask for their advice, because they were the only ones with the required knowledge to whom I could talk.

Economic Development Project Assistant – Devon County Council

Universtiy of Exeter Internships, UoE Internships, SCP, SBP, GBP, A2I

What were your main duties and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

I provided administrative support on a range of projects managed by the team such as funding schemes and live projects. My daily activities included developing forms, drafting press releases, liaising with applicants to funding schemes, arranging meetings and taking minutes, proof reading and adding to reports, managing social media and editing websites.

I also provided full administrative and operational support for FabLab Devon, a project based in Exeter Library. I gave events and marketing support, and co-ordinated the FabLab Devon volunteers.
Additionally, I was responsible for the concept and organisation of GEW 2016 events.

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

Completing a final milestone funding report which secured £7,000 and getting a funding application for £65,000 past it’s first evaluation.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

My role reduced the pressure on team members who were able to delegate to me. The funding I secured was also greatly beneficial.

Did you encounter any problems during the course of your internship and if so, how did you overcome them?

I didn’t have a very thorough induction in all aspects of my role and was very daunted when I first started as it was a multi-facetted role. I was also repeatedly told that the intern I was replacing had done a poor job which I felt put a lot of pressure on me. It was difficult to manage my time between projects and to prioritise different workloads. I overcame these issues by asking a lot of questions, using my initiative and learning from my mistakes. To manage my workload I used tools such as Trello and Outlook calendar, I set myself deadlines and time allowances. Once I’d settled in I was happy in my internship.

 “Steph’s natural can-do attitude has meant she has been given a number of other learning opportunities that have led to an increase in her understanding of DCC’s economic priorities and enhanced her knowledge of the public sector as a whole” – Victoria Gage