While Australians normally go to the beach and relax during their big summer break from university, Brooke decided to go on an AIESEC internship in Beijing China working in sustainability. Coming into her internship with little previous interest in climate change, she is now as committed as ever.
Her internship was with The Institute for Environment and Development, an NGO based in Beijing China. As a Japanese and Chinese language student, her passion for the cultures of the Asia-Pacific region fuelled her desire for the internship.
Her role was to work with in the education of primary and high school students on renewable energy and sustainability. It was an opportunity for her to interact frequently with Chinese culture and the Chinese language. But for a country like China, climate change is a major emerging issue. To be able to help the students of China learn and understand these issues was very satisfying.
Through the education she was providing, Brooke found herself becoming more aware and passionate about environmental sustainability. “I am very grateful for this internship, as it opened up my mind to an area I wasn’t particularly passionate about or very knowledgeable in”. She continued, “This internship taught me a lot, and I was very fortunate to be in a country that is being very innovative in their efforts to curb climate change, but is also not setting the best example in some areas of environmental sustainability.”
For an experience of only two months to have made an impact on a social issue and at a personal level is a gift. But to have such lasting learning and change from the experience is a treasure.
“Upon completion of my exchange in China, I spent some time reflecting on my experiences in China and what I had learnt from my internship, and I realised that it affected my mindset quite dramatically. I am very eager to participate in efforts to promote positive changes towards sustainability.”
We look forward to hearing about your contribution to the environment, Brooke.