Craig Duncan was a participant in the 2022 Virtual Journalism Professional Practicum. Craig is studying a Bachelor of IT, Media and Communications at Murdoch University. He received a $3,000 New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant to support his participation in this program.
Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS program?
I knew about ACICIS from a previous student, so when my university suggested it I was quick to jump on board. I didn’t fully understand what I was engaging in, nevertheless, it was an excellent decision!
Q: Did you receive a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant? Do you think the NCP is an important initiative?
Saying the goal of the NCP is to raise awareness of Indo-Pacific relations for Australians and I entered this program with absolutely none, it seems very telling how successful this initiative is. Educating young minds about our relationships beyond Australia is extremely important and any means of making that more accessible for emerging students is a phenomenal asset!
Q: How have you found the academic components of this virtual program – i.e. the language classes/seminars?
The language classes were extremely enjoyable and are still missed even now!
I really enjoyed the seminars also, often getting a wide range of information and insight into Indonesian issues and society and having the ability to discuss it thoroughly.
Q: What organisation are you interning with? (Explain your role and responsibilities)
I interned with the Environment Institute Indonesia; it was awesome!
My role was to create content for them, be it Instagram feeds, short videos or articles. I was provided total freedom in the topic so long as it related to the environment. I was also a speaker for their environmental talk webinar which was an exciting and neat experience
Q: How have you found the work culture (albeit online) of your host organisation? How is it different to work experience in Australia?
My host organisation was immensely supportive and understanding, I was able to meet a range of individuals from Indonesia through them and their support. If I was interested in a topic I would pitch them an idea and within the next few days they would have found me an expert to interview.
Q: What are the main skills you have learnt during your virtual internship?
I mainly learned a great developed a great deal of self-confidence in my abilities. I was able to take skills I had already developed and build upon them to create a range of content I am really proud of.
Q: What did you find to be the most rewarding part of this virtual experience?
Undoubtedly, seeing the work I had created being posted online and warmly received is an excellent feeling. The connections and networks I have been able to establish through this time are amazing also!
Q: Were you able to learn about the Indonesian culture from this virtual program? If yes, how was this achieved?
The language class, seminars and virtual field trips were excellent as an introduction to Indonesian Culture. Discussions with my internship mentor were also extremely informative and interesting.
Q: How will the virtual internship benefit or influence your future career?
The work I have done for my host organisation has already been amazingly helpful in my future career. I have been fortunate enough to translate my skills from this internship into another position. Developing environmentally focused content for social media and more is definitely something I see myself doing more of in the future.
Q: Would you recommend this virtual program to your friends?
Absolutely, given they are able to maintain the workload! this is a phenomenal opportunity to develop skills and meet people. Even online I have made connections I hope to keep active for years to come!
Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase:
It means turtle, so it was very useful in showing off my pet turtle!
Q: Describe your experience of the virtual internship program in three words: