Skip to Main Content

Intern of the Week: Yohka Tanaka - Interdisciplinary Studies

Yohka's Experience: Japan International Food for the Hungry

December 10, 2013 11:55 AM

Name:  Yohka Tanaka

Internship, Co-op or Research Site: Japan International Food for the Hungry

Major(s)/Minor(s): Interdisciplinary Studies

Expected Graduation Year: 2014

Briefly describe your internship, co-op, research, or service- learning opportunity, including your day-to-day tasks, responsibilities, and assignments.

I got my intern site, Japan International Food for the Hungry (JIFH), by typing "npo kiga (meaning "hunger" in Japanese)" in a search box, getting the site's website, and contacting them if they provide an internship opportunity, even though I found on their website saying: "At this time, there are no volunteer opportunities available." I just ignored it and asked them if there are internship opportunities available. The result is: I got an internship opportunity. 

What I'm doing is:
1) Learn about JIFH (what it does, how it works, etc)
2) Inform myself about what has happened in areas where JIFH have supported (9 countries in Africa, 7 countries in Asia, and 1 country in South America).
3) Office work (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, sorting documents), including translation between English and Japanese.
4) Event planning, preparing, and facilitating
5) Summarize information to make a report, which will be read by other NPOs, FAO Japan office, and the Ministry of Foreign Affair (Japan).
At the very beginning, I spent most of my time for learning, and then I've moved on to the next step: JIFH will ask me to write a report, plan/ prepare/ facilitate events, or join meetings for the World Food Day.

What have you enjoyed the most about your position or organization/company?

Specifically, I was so excited at the meeting for the World Food Day. People from FAO Japan, the Ministry of Foreign Affair, Table For Two, Second Harvest Japan, and six other NPOs working on food-related issues came by and talked about what we can do in Japan to support World Food Day. I was just listening to what they said, but it was pleasure to be there and to get their business card.

What have you gained from your experience that you could not have gained from another opportunity?

Face-to-face talk with people whose work is my dream job.

What advice would you give to another student who is seeking an internship or similar experience?

Don't give up. Actively seek an opportunity.

As I described how I got my internship opportunity...
(copied and pasted from the question #1)
I got my intern site, Japan International Food for the Hungry (JIFH), by typing "npo kiga (meaning "hunger" in Japanese)" in a search box, getting the site's website, and contacting them if they provide an internship opportunity, even though I found on their website saying: "At this time, there are no volunteer opportunities available." I just ignored it and asked them if there are internship opportunities available. The result is: I got an internship opportunity. 

How do you see your experience as meaningful? This might involve skills you’ve gained, information you’ve learned, mentors you’ve connected with, or projects you’ve completed.

I want to eradicate hunger. On UMBC campus, I established Table For Two UMBC (Table For Two is a Japanese NPO simultaneously addressing under-nutrition and over-nutrition). My experience as an intern at Japan International Food for the Hungry will directly contribute to my future, which is to establish a NPO to eradicate hunger. I'm feeling how my intern site is operated and connecting with people working at NPOs and the government that are interested in World Food Day. I feel that everything is meaningful.

Please provide a short quote about what you liked most about your position / earning internship credit / the internship placement process / the Shriver Center:

Networking: I could meet people and get their contact information, which will be surely used once I could establish my own non-profit organization.

 

0 Comments (requires login)