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Stati Uniti d’America

Questionario per Internship

In tutto il mondo sono molti coloro che vogliono andare negli USA. Tra questi un numero cospicuo è costituito da chi vuol fare un Internship (uno dei modi locali di chiamare lo stage).
Data la concorrenza planetaria, risulta decisivo presentarsi bene al momento della candidatura.
Questa si effettua di solito rispondendo all’apposito questionario, che molte aziende hanno elaborato per capire meglio il candidato e le sue capacità. Il questionario, perciò, va compilato con cura, se non si vuole che finisca nel cestino alla prima, affrettata, lettura.

Di seguito pubblichiamo le risposte di uno studente di scienze ambientali, che è andato a fare un Internship presso un istituto di ricerca dalle parti di San Francisco.

1. How long would you be available for, and what would be your anticipated start date if you were offered the position?

I could be available for about 6 months. Starting date could be the first of august, because at the present, the temporary job which I do is not qualified job (warehouseman) and does not allow me to utilize my educational background. The unique problem is bureaucratic: the time for obtaining the documents for internship (visa J-1). Yesterday morning I called my sponsor (  who explained that after you filled in an enrolment form (Internship Agreement), it will spend other two-three month to complete the whole procedure.

2. What are your personal goals for internship?

I think it is very important to do practical experience (in a particular in ecological field) and to find out for what I studied. The Italian university is more theoretical and less practical than American university. At the present I don’t wish a job in a office for 8 hours per day in front of a computer to study abstract concepts. Maybe in the future it will be different, but now I need to acquire practical knowledge.
I have really interest in habitat restoration, park management and monitoring. This knowledge will be useful for my professional future with a job concerning the environment. In particular I enjoy doing a job that alternates indoor and outdoor activities and that permits to use different attitudes.
Another reason is the possibility to work in a natural habitat away from the stress of urban life. Without being totally isolated as I’m also attracted by the dynamic and open-minded San Francisco.
Another goal is to acquire an in-depth knowledge of US culture and society. It is exiting to know people from different countries and to observe things that are new to me. All give me a sense of adventure and give me the possibility to test my adaptability in a new contest.

3. Describe any other volunteer experiences that you have had. What did you enjoy the most about them and the least?

I did two volunteer experiences sponsored by International Civil Service (a world-wide volunteer association which works also in USA). During these ecological work-camp we cooperated with the local communities in activities like constructing and maintaining trails, managing woods, painting houses and benches.
The camps were interesting because of the international contest (there were people from every part of the world) and because of the original habitat (the savage inside of Sardinia’s island and a forest in Eastern Germany). I had to learn that in an international group decision making processes needs a long time and a lot of patience which was very frustrating at the beginning.
Some years ago I was an educator in my local church community. The activities consisted primarily in leading a meeting once a week for teenagers (14-16 years old) and in the organization of summer vacation camps in the mountains. Planning the outdoor activities and seeing the deep involvement of the participants was perhaps the most satisfying part of the work.

4. What is your experience in working with the people, specifically youth, and have you done any teaching/environmental education? If not, how do you feel about working in a position where you will be leading groups? Do you consider yourself to be introverted or extroverted?

As group leader in the church I realized several environmental education activities like paper recycling or river cleaning. I tried to teach an personal attitude in the sign of sustainability.
I think sincerely to be more introverted than extroverted. But I like working with people, in particular with children. I don’t have problems to be cooperative and responsible with other people. It´s important for me to have time after work doing things on my own.

5. What field experience have you had in your work with environmental studies?

I have done field experiences with my University in three peculiar places in North-East of in Italy. We studied all the aspects of environment (chemical analysis of water and air, soil, vegetation, fauna, human impact and so on). The places were:
mountain ecosystem (Alpine zone);
lagoon ecosystem (lagoon of Venice);
and coastal zone (the Po ridge’s delta).
I did another field trip in Wales (Aberystwyth) during my studies in UK. It was interesting for the way of managing the national parks which should maintain a balance between conservation of the natural habitat and timber production.
A part of my thesis could be consider like a field experience, in fact I monitored for one year every two weeks the water quality of the springs north of my home town. It was supported by the local water supply company. The scope was to demonstrate the relation between human activity and contamination of water by nitrate.

6. Have you had any experience with Microsoft Office - specifically Access or using digital mapping programs -?

I am sorry I don’t know Access, but I know very well Excel. For my thesis I used Arc-view (mapping program). In the university I learned also a little bit of Idrisi.

7. Have you had experience in writing reports?

It was requested in several university courses and for all field study trips. Actually I am writing an article for an environmental journal about my thesis. I think that my major difficulty is to write a report in good English.

I hope this information answered all your questions. Don´t hesitate to contact me for further clarifications.

    Paolo P.