My second week in the Philippines was gradually picking up pace in comparison to my first week where I was getting acclimated to being in a new space entirely. Hence, my second week, I explored more of the Philippines, and work started to pick up at my internship.
In the first week, my internship supervisors prioritized me settling into my new position. They did this through assigning me powerpoints and readings, all of which taught me the processes that my unit – the Business Development Unity – acquire clientele to license and market DOST-FNRI-developed (Department of Science and Technology-Food and Nutrition Research Institute) food products and technologies to achieve optimum nutrition in the Philippines. As I finished up these readings, I began informing my supervisor that I had finished my assignments. Once I completed the readings, I was told to draft the opening remarks for the director of FNRI for a DOST-FNRI coordinated event that would bring technology licensees, DOST officials, and potential FNRI-clientèle to one place. Nervous wasn’t even the word girl! I had never written a speech for anyone, but I’ve certainly never written a speech for the director of an established, national government agency. Due to this, I expressed my hesitancy to my supervisor. She gave me some past examples of opening messages delivered by the director of FNRI, assured me that all would be well and that my work would be checked by herself and others to ensure quality, and sent me on my way. I was happy to hear that, and grateful for the opportunity, so I gave it my best shot! I did way better than I thought I would, and was even proud of the work I produced; it made me wonder why I doubted myself so much in the first place despite never having an issue with my writing! The entire assignment affirmed me of my abilities, and it scooped me out of the imposter syndrome I was experiencing. In between my time of completing other assignments and writing the opening remarks for Dr. Agdeppa (the director of FNRI), I attended many zoom meetings where I got to apply what I had read to actual meetings with clientele committed to licensing DOST-FNRI-developed food technology. For instance, I sat in on a meeting where I observed technology training, which was a briefing to different companies to teach them what technologies were needed, and how they are to be used, to create the DOST-FNRI-developed food products and, hence, marketed to the public. I was amazed because the process wasn’t as high-tech and aristocratic as I had imagined, and I was pleasantly surprised at this observation. I don’t expect that this is the general reality for a lot of corporations due to FNRI being impressively eco-friendly and intentionally accessible in regards to the technology required for their food products. I love that about FNRI. I’ve been observing, and therefore learning, quite a bit during my internship. I know that there’s only more to come, too, so I’m so excited.
My roommate and I strive to travel to at least one new place every weekend, preferably on a Saturday. My internship requires me to walk around a mile every morning and afternoon in the humid, hot weather, so I don’t have the energy to go somewhere more frequently, especially during the week. I don’t mind it, though; who doesn’t like a little bit of exercise :-}. Anyways, the second week of being in the Philippines, my roommate and I traveled to the Venice mall, which features a series of restaurants and such that appears to be floating on water, much like the actual city Venice, Italy. I have a couple of pictures that do not even begin to compare to how pretty the sight was:
Anyways, the mall was massive and vibrant, like most of the malls here in the Philippines. My roommate and I entered some clothing stores, where I hardly did anything but window shop. We watched Spiderman: Across the Spider-Verse – and I don’t even have the words to describe how much that movie left me awestruck and obsessed. If you haven’t seen it, I truly don’t know what else you could possibly be doing. Lastly, we ate at a ramen place. My roommate’s food came out so hot that it cooked the egg sitting in it. Generally, we walked around and admired the beauty of the mall. Outside of our apartment lounge area we don’t have internet, so we had to wing it and ask someone to call us a Grab, which is the uber equivalent in the Philippines. We got back to the apartment just fine, too. Most of the new experiences here have been fun to maneuver, regardless of whether it seems inconvenient at the moment or not, so I can’t complain.
I’m continuing to explore more of the Philippines while thoroughly enjoying all my new leanings at my internship. I’m continuing to learn new ways to enjoy this country, and I am so happy I got the chance to come here!