Published on March 20, 2015
Jump start your career in engineering while exploring one of Latin America’s most innovative and evolving cities with an engineering internship in Colombia. Interns will get to know the colorful city Medellín while contributing to real-world engineering projects and working alongside experienced professionals.
Interns in Colombia have access to a wide variety of engineering internship roles. The Medellín program includes internships in aerospace, chemical, industrial, aeronautical, mechanical and environmental engineering. Some former interns have worked at firms like the Cryogas Indura Group, Talsa, IdeaTech, which works closely with NASA, and Tecnologias MARTE.
With a warm climate and warmer people, Colombia is an excellent Latin American country to live in. On top of gaining rich professional experiences, interns in Medellín have left with memorable intercultural experiences. Former interns have found locals to be incredibly welcoming, open to the idea of cultural exchange and willing to show newcomers around. Medellínenses commonly ask foreigners where they are from and want to give visitors the best possible impression of their city.
In the past 20 years, Medellín has seen a complete turnaround thanks to economic growth, urban development and innovation. Today, some 11% of the national economy is produced within the city. The city, once plagued by drug-related violence, has been transformed into what consultancy Indra calls the best Latin American city to live in, tying with Santiago, Chile. Instead of violence, the city is now characterized by strong public services, security and sustainable development. The Wall Street Journal even named Medellín its innovative city of the year in 2013, thanks to its modern and well-planned public transportation systems, social innovation, infrastructure and technological investments.
It’s hard to have a bad day in Medellín, where the famously lovely climate stays spring-like year-round. Interns will feel like spending their free time time outdoors, no matter what time of the year their internship begins. Medellín’s temperature year-round sits between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. That means better access to fresh fruits, flowers, vegetables and greenery all year long.
Medellín is Colombia’s second-largest city with 3.5 million people living in the metropolitan area. Surrounded by seven hills, Medellín is located in the Aburrá Valley among the Andes mountains. Locals are often called either Antioqueños after their home province Antioquia or paisas rather than Medellínenses.
The local paisas are known for their regional pride. The term comes from the word paisano, or “fellow countryman”, and implies someone from an area encompassing the Colombian states of Antioquia, Caldas, Risaralda, Quindio and a few towns of Tolima and Valle del Cauca. Paisa is also a cultural identity that indicates a distinct way to speak, dress and live. One example of paisa culture in Medellín is the prevalence of buying basic products from small neighborhood stores, rather than relying on major supermarkets.
Interns in the engineering internship program in Medellín live in the secure, upscale neighborhood, El Poblado. The area is filled with malls, squares and several reputable universities. Many consider El Poblado as the city’s industrial and commercial center.
Outside of Medellín, interns are close to dozens of day trips and excursions for their days off. Former interns have visited small nearby towns like Guatapé, which boasts a quaint, small-town culture, very distinct from the big city. The Río Claro reserve is also an excellent place to spent the weekend, with a crystal clear river to explore and a variety of bird life that often attracts bird-watchers.
There's also plenty for interns to do without even leaving the city. The Parque Explora in central Medellín is a zoo, aquarium and botanical gardens and a great place to get familiar with some of Colombia’s natural life. Considered the first cable propelled transit system in South America, the Medellín metrocable is also not to miss. While two of the lines are used for public transport, line L has been constructed for tourists and offers scenic views and transportation to Arví park, which is both an archeological site and an ecological nature preserve.
Participants in engineering internships in Colombia are not required to speak Spanish in their roles. However, there are still opportunities to learn the Spanish language with the Colombia engineering internship program. With some 320 million speakers worldwide, Spanish is an important language in the global economy and the third most commonly spoken language in the world. The Intern Group program provides optional Spanish language classes for all levels at Universidad EAFIT in El Poblado. Colombians speak a notoriously clear, easy-to-understand Spanish, making the country an ideal place to pick up the language. Engineering interns will be able to practice their Spanish during their internship in Colombia and maybe even help their coworkers perfect their English. Why not embrace the cultural exchange and pick up another language?
Get real-world engineering experience and soak up the colorful Colombian culture with an engineering internship in Medellín. You’ll pick up some Spanish, contribute to important engineering projects in Colombia and be the protagonist in your own South American adventure.
Apply now and boost your career!