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BU Abroad: Being an Aussie “Work Experiencer”

A television internship Down Under means more than pouring coffee

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In the video above, step behind the set at Australia’s number-one morning talk show with Alexandra Daks (CAS’10, COM’10).

Production interns on NBC’s Today Show would probably count handing a cup of coffee to Matt Lauer as a semester highlight. But as Alexandra Daks found out last spring in BU’s Sydney Internship Program, in Australia it’s different.

As an intern for The Morning Show, the country’s number-one morning talk show, Daks (CAS’10, COM’10) was on air seven times, was recognized on the street, and sat directly across from host Kylie Gillies’ desk. And she never once had to fetch the hosts a cup of coffee.

In a culture that encourages collaboration and equality — interns are called “work experiencers” in Australia — Daks feels her contributions were both valuable and used. Whether interviewing people on the street or looking up movie clips for the show, “everything I did went to air and helped someone,” she says. “That was such a crazy feeling. I was saving them time and making a difference.”

“It’s great to feel that you’re part of the team,” she says. “And that is definitely an Australian thing.” The film and anthropology major’s work was appreciated: she was asked to stay on for an additional five weeks.

“I stayed, and traveled with my mom for the last few weeks,” she says. “My mom says it was her mission to come to Australia to bring me home.”

Returning to the United States this past June was “a bit surreal,” Daks says. Walking and driving on the right side of the road again required some readjustment. On the other hand, the experience of working on live network television made a lasting change, she says. “It was life-altering in regard to my knowledge and confidence in my future career.”

Alan Wong can be reached at alanwong@bu.edu.

Next week, another foreign visit. Read more at BU Abroad.

12 Comments

12 Comments on BU Abroad: Being an Aussie “Work Experiencer”

  • Anonymous on 09.26.2009 at 6:43 am

    WOW!

    What a fantastic overview to an exceptional experience abroad! When can I go?

  • Anonymous on 09.26.2009 at 2:59 pm

    looks so fun! Great

    looks so fun!
    Great interview Daks.

  • Anonymous on 09.30.2009 at 9:24 am

    Great Interview Alan! Cant wait to see ours.

    Definitely looks like a great experience! Cant wait to make it to Australia one day.

    Best,

    From South America!

  • m@ on 09.30.2009 at 9:37 am

    Noice

    I love Australia… nice video.

  • Anonymous on 09.30.2009 at 10:25 am

    what a hawtie!!

  • Anonymous on 09.30.2009 at 11:58 am

    Sounds like she had a great time. I just wish study abroad was more affordable and wasn’t seen as a joke for some majors. BU has no programs that pertain especially to my majors, so I can’t go abroad.

    I also lament the fact that when I get an internship, it will be in America, and I will most likely be fetching coffee for people. No one will see me as an equal “work experiencer.” I will merely be another young intern lost in the shuffle.

  • kcornuelle on 09.30.2009 at 12:02 pm

    high quality

    This is totally enticing! Thanks for following her, and making this short clip of an intern in australia so beautiful.

  • Anonymous on 09.30.2009 at 1:40 pm

    Beautiful

    Great video, it looks like a movie! It seems like she had a great experience and definitely makes me think about heading to Australia as a place to study abroad.

  • LZelig on 09.30.2009 at 7:42 pm

    extremely well done! super high quality, really interesting, makes me want to check out austrialia! and this daks girl is very well spoken and inspiring!

  • COM 2011 Student on 10.01.2009 at 6:13 pm

    Australia

    I have been thinking about studying abroad on and off. I think I might want to do it senior year and Sydney was always a consideration. I totally want to go now!! Well done!

  • sex toys on 11.28.2009 at 3:11 am

    “In a culture that encourages collaboration and equality — interns are called “work experiencers” in Australia — Daks feels her contributions were both valuable and used. Whether interviewing people on the street or looking up movie clips for the show, “everything I did went to air and helped someone,” she says. “That was such a crazy feeling. I was saving them time and making a difference.”

    It’s a great thing that Daks’ internship was one that was full of learning. It’s a great thing that she felt that she was a very important part of the team. She could use the experiences and knowledge she has learned to further develop her career in the future.

  • Chelsea M. on 11.29.2010 at 4:05 pm

    I always wanted to study abroad and why not in Australia, it’s not the first I heard it’s really good there.
    Anyway it seems that she had a great experience there and it shows us that we should not be afraid to leave the US for a while !
    Nice video by the way

     

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