April was definitely a month of changes. Since the beginning of March, I had been applying for internships. Originally I looked into internships with political organizations but as it turned out, doing a major in politics and even getting lots of A’s in my poli sci classes is not enough to beat out the intense competition.
Afterwards I thought, what makes me stand out as a candidate? In what fields do I have the most experience in? It easily came down to writing, art/design and social media, so I applied for a bunch of internship positions in these fields and the offers started coming in!
One of them happened to be working for the Nike European Headquarters in Hilversum, Netherlands. As a huge fan of Nike, I couldn’t have accepted my offer any faster (this was of course after jumping up and down for a solid few minutes!!)
And then all of a sudden, I was moving to the Netherlands!!!
Since the internship started a month after I received my offer, April was all of a sudden filled with things to plan and do. There were quite the ups and downs, and a slew of adventures, frustrations, and everything in between. In the upcoming days, I’ll be posting more about them in detail but for now, here’s a sampling of what’s to come!
I’m so excited to fill you guys in on my latest adventures!
1) How to Get a Holiday Working Visa in the Netherlands
The first was getting the right visa to work in the Netherlands, since one of the internship requirements was that you already had to be eligible to work there. While my residence permit in Germany allows me to travel around the EU, work-wise, I was limited to working within Germany.
Luckily, as a Canadian I was able to apply for a Holiday Working Visa for the Netherlands, which lets me live and work there for a year. Unlike the Australian Holiday Working Visa I had gotten a few years ago though, there weren’t hundreds of websites telling you about the procedure and no online application.
Strangely they had this procedure where you have to actually go to their country to an IND office, fill out an application and a bank statement showing that you have enough money for a return flight, and then wait a couple weeks for them to decide whether they will grant you a residence permit or not!
Luckily since I was already living in Germany, my little trek to Amsterdam wasn’t that bad. In this post, I’ll detail how exactly to get the Dutch HWV because there really isn’t much information on it on the internet!
Also included is a story about the Serbian drug dealers I encountered during this journey.
2) My horrible experience with Nestpick and why I’ll never use them again
Finding an apartment in the Netherlands in less than a month also proved challenging, especially in Amsterdam where apparently they are snatched up in a matter of minutes from when they are listed! When you don’t live in the country, it’s almost impossible since most people want to meet you before they decide to give you the room.
Plus, there’s countless stories of housing scandals in the Netherlands so you kinda want to make sure you see the place for yourself beforehand as well.
I thought I was safe by using a website thats growing in popularity called Nestpick, only to almost be scammed of over 600 euros as the company had refused to refund my deposit to “the worst landlady in Utrecht”. I showed them plenty of forums and even websites dedicated to informing the public to stay away from renting from her, only to have Nestpick basically tell me “well most of these posts don’t date past 2012 so we don’t care.” Don’t they know the saying, “once evil, always evil?”
Anyway, what happened exactly and how did I get out of that ordeal?! Find out soon!
3) On long-distance relationships
While I was beyond ecstatic about my internship, my sudden move to another country also meant leaving my boyfriend, especially after we found the most perfect apartment in Munich together… which we thought we would be living in for at least half a year (since we both seem to be moving constantly for work and school, 6 months in one location would actually be monumental for us!)
Of course accepting the travel life also means that long-distance relationships are just a part of life. In the past, I’ve had a bunch of long-distance relationships that didn’t work out and a move to another country would have resulted in a lot of tears, but by now, this one seemed like a piece of cake.
I’ll be giving some tips later on, with some interesting perspectives on the topic of long distance relationships from my friends as well!
4) Scoring your dream internship
Ok and lastly, I’ll be making a post on scoring your dream internship and tips for successful Skype interviews. After my month of intensive internship applications, I think I’ve become quite skilled at it. Somehow I had gone from being the worst, most awkward Skype interviewee to being pretty top notch at it (that sounds like I’m going to be sharing an embarrassing story!).
I’ll share some of my tips and tricks so that you can land the internship of your dreams as well.
Stay tuned guys! 😉