8 killer reasons to do an internship in Latin America

1. Tasty food and fruits

Colombia has an array of juicy and delicious fresh fruits, including some that you may have never even heard of, making it an amazing country for produce. The country also has many dishes that are a blend of European and indigenous foods. Pork, beans, potato and rice are all common in Colombian cuisine. One of the country’s most well-known dishes is the traditional “bandeja paisa” or the paisa platter, which is served often in Medellín and includes fried egg, sausage, an arepa, avocado, chicharrón (fried pork belly), white rice, powdered meat, plantain and beans. The best part? All of this tasty goodness will only set you back $5.


internship in Latin America


2. The people

Interns in Latin America will get to experience the memorable friendliness of the Colombian people. While living in the country’s second largest city, Medellín, interns will work alongside locals or “Medellinenses”, who are warm, friendly and helpful. Open to foreigners, most locals in Medellín are accommodating and genuinely kind to strangers.


3. Forever spring

How could you not love living in a place nicknamed “The City of Eternal Spring”. Latin American interns will love working in Medellín, where the temperature rests between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit year round. With such stable and beautiful warm weather, Medellín is most definitely the easiest place to pack for. Moreover, the weather will encourage interns to explore the city on foot, eat outdoors and check out the city’s many parks and plazas.


4. Opportunity

Experience in an emerging economy offers unique and valuable knowledge for interns interested in international business, trade or finance. Many believe the old guard is changing, and it will be emerging economies that provide the growth to drive the world forward this century. Ripe with natural resources and boasting the second largest population in South America, Colombia is a great place to be an intern in Latin America. The country has a stable and growing economy, and one of the largest in the region. Leading investment banks such as JP Morgan have labeled Colombia the next star of the continent.


“Colombia is an exhilarating emerging economy in full swing. With the second largest population in South America and an abundant wealth of natural resources it has long held great potential.” -JP Morgan


internship in latin america


5. Español

Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the world in terms of native speakers, second only to Mandarin. Doing an internship in Latin America will give interns abroad the opportunity to learn Spanish through immersion learning. Working in a Spanish-speaking office will also teach an intern business Spanish, which will help out in future job pursuits. With an increasing globalized world, foreign language abilities are becoming more and more valued in the labor market. All that said, the best place for an intern to learn Spanish is in Colombia, where the locals speak slowly, clearly and with less slang than most other Latin American countries.


6. Culture and festivals

Like many other countries in Latin America, Colombian culture is actually a blend of several different cultures. The mix of Spanish, various indigenous cultures and African culture make Colombia what it is today. One of Latin America’s most famous cultural and literary icons is the Colombian Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who is famous for his introduction of the genre “Magical Realism” to the world in his novels. Typical Colombian cultural celebrations include the famous flower festival in Medellín, which lasts for 10 days in early August. The “Feria de las Flores” attracts tourists from across the globe. During the festival rural farmers make their way to the city from the countryside to display intricate flower designs.


internship in Latin America


7. It’s affordable

Colombia’s low cost of living makes it the most affordable internship program. Moreover, you’ll spend less day-to-day with low food and transportation costs. It’s definitely the best place to go if you’re on a budget.


8. The tunes

Whether you’re interested in classic Colombian musical styles like cumbia, or modern alternative beats – Colombia has a lot to offer music fans. There’s a lot more than Shakira to come out of the country. Salsa legend Joe Arroyo can’t be missed, meanwhile Latin America loves the Colombian rockers Aterciopelados. Alternative pop bands like Bomba Estereo and Monsieur Perine attract younger crowds and fuse different musical genres.




Sources: Medellínliving.com, tradingeconomics.com, Wikipedia – world languages, Wikipedia – Colombian culture, AltLatino

Photo 1. based on MEDELLÍN, by Iván Erre Jota, CC-by-SA 2.0

Photo 2. based on 05.05.07 – 24 hours Flickr, by Luz Adriana Villa, CC-by-2.0

Photo 3. by The Intern Group


The International Internships Blog is a collaboration by The Intern Group staff, alumni and current participants to give you career advice & tips, program information, & so much more!

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Elizabeth Trovall

After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her fourth year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.
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