Virtual Journalism Professional Practicum

Charlie Wilson was a private participant in the 2021 Virtual Journalism Professional Practicum.

Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS program?

The reason I chose to apply for the ACICIS program was that it came so highly recommended and I thought it would be an amazing opportunity to gain an insight into the journalism industry. The prospect of experiencing Indonesian culture was also greatly exciting.

Q: How have you found the academic components of this virtual program – i.e. the language classes/seminars?

I loved all aspects of the academic experience in the virtual internship. I was not sure what to expect with everything online but was blown away by the professionalism of all of our mentors. It was awesome to be able to learn basic Indonesian and I’m looking forward to applying my new found skills in Indonesia someday! I learned a huge amount in such a short amount of time thanks to the ACICIS program.

Q: What organisation did you intern with? 

I was placed at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). During my time there I was assigned a variety of roles including copy editing and creating summaries of lengthy publications. It was a great experience as many of the documents I worked on centred around topics that I was interested in like defence and international diplomacy.

Q: How have you found the work culture (albeit online) of your host organisation? How is it different to work experience in Australia?

While it was a different experience completing the Practicum remotely I was able to learn a great deal from my mentors.  Immediately I was able to feel welcome by all I met at CSIS. There wasn’t all that much difference between the two as I was struck by the kindness of all I interacted with.

Q: What are the main skills you have learnt during your virtual internship?

I think I developed my confidence during the ACICIS program. I was able to interact with accomplished professionals and ask questions of their experiences which in turn made me feel more confident in my own abilities. I believe my analytical skills and editing capabilities were also enhanced during my CSIS placement.

Q: What did you find to be the most rewarding part of this virtual experience?

Meeting so many amazing people! From the mentors to my peers, it seemed everyone you interacted with had something special. I am so lucky to have been apart of this program and am seriously glad I pursued it.

Q: Were you able to learn about the Indonesian culture from this virtual program? If yes, how was this acheived?

Heaps. Again, I wasn’t sure how immersive the program would be as it was solely online. But this certainly wasn’t the case. I feel so much was packed into the program and my understanding of Indonesian culture was greatly enhanced. It has truly inspired me to venture there one day to meet the amazing people I met (virtually) along the way.

Q: How will the virtual internship benefit or influence your career?

Previously journalism was not a career path I had thought a great deal about and the ACICIS program has completely changed that. I am now hoping to build on what I have learned through the journalism Practicum to hopefully land a job in a sector I have learned so much about during my ACICIS experience.

Because of that fact our program was completely online, I am beyond keen to eventually work in Indonesia. I was so lucky that the program was able to continue virtually through such a turbulent year but it has left me eager to eventually be able to ply my trade over in Indonesia. I met so many engaging and interesting Indonesian’s online that it would be almost a waste not to one day venture over.

Q: Would you recommend this virtual program to your friends?

100% I would recommend this program to anyone. It has given me so many lessons and helped shaped the way I pursue my future career. The ACICIS program is so valuable to anyone looking ahead to commence their professional career.

Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase: 

Sama-Sama 🙂

Q: Describe your experience of this program in three words: 

Inspiring. Engaging. Insightful.