Adriel Tjokrosaputro, a fifth semester Music Business student interning with Warner Music in Indonesia, shares his thoughts on taking charge of the internship search process and how he secured an overseas internship
After countless internship applications, face-to-face interviews, and phone discussions, it has come to my attention that many internship sites in the U.S. like to do this thing that I often call “The Limbo.” This means that after the interviews, even though they promised to inform me the week after, they did not give me neither acceptance nor rejection. To those who I followed up with, they simply responded, “At this point, we have not made our decisions…” Some even did not follow up with me for two months.
This was made worse by the fact that I was rejected for my dream internship in Washington, D.C. with one of the largest live show promoters in the world.The internship matches well with my career goal, the interviewer is very respectful, and the whole program was just fantastic. Unfortunately, after three rounds of interviews, it became apparent that I did not fulfill the criteria the best compared to the others.
The frustration of waiting for internship decisions in the U.S. led me to applying for internships in South East Asia, particularly a very unusual place to do a music industry internship. Unlike the U.S. market, Indonesia and Singapore (the countries that I applied internships for) do not have particularly clear instructions on how to even apply in the first place.Thankfully, the connections that I have in these countries helped me a lot by giving me the contact information for applications.
A week before the finals, I got two replies from Indonesia: one from a multimedia company and the other from a recording company. The email simply said, “Yes, we would like to offer you a position in our company. However, to get the best grip on what you would do, we would love to have a chat with you.” Strange? Indeed. Securing an internship before having an interview is almost unheard of everywhere in the world.
Eventually, I sent out emails to every single internship site that I applied to, saying that I was no longer available to intern with them because I had secured a position in Indonesia. And thus, I went home, did interviews with both companies. Ultimately, I decided to intern at Warner Music Indonesia’s Marketing and New Media Department.
It has been a week since I started my internship and I have been given so many exciting projects, which I would talk about in my next blog post. But for now, I would just give advice to those who are looking for internships… timing is everything. When the companies that you applied to did not follow up, then it is your responsibility to follow up with them. Otherwise, look for other oppor tunities.
Adriel Tjokrosaputro is currently a 5th semester student at Berklee College of Music, majoring in Music Business/Management in Marketing track. Currently, he is working as a Marketing and New Media Intern at Warner Music Indonesia, a subsidiary of Warner Music Group headquartered in New York City. In the future, Adriel hopes to work in the marketing/promotion side of live entertainment industry, particularly in the field of touring concerts and productions.
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