ciee - council on international educational exchange
BAFF

Professional Internship Program

BAFF News Blog

Learn more about the organization and past events.

10/04/2017

PIP Elina Cire promoting contemporary American culture

Elina Cire, Latvian PIP, blended both the professional and cultural expectation of her J-1 experience into one picture-perfect internship.  With an undergrad in Intercultural Competence, and a Master's in Arts Management and Marketing from the Latvian Academy of Culture, Elina landed a gratifying placement with FringeArts in Philly. Her interning role served to assist this company's Programming Department in meeting the individual and logistical needs of presented and independent artists, as well as provide administrative support to the Development team as they worked across departments to develop resources for all aspects of the organization. Working collaboratively, the team at FringeArts created engagement opportunities for audiences and supporters of FringeArts, and researched and raised contributed income from foundations, corporate sponsors, and individual donors. In addition, Elina assisted the marketing department with implementing the individual marketing plans for each show, as well as its overall organization branding and identity, promotional campaigns, PR materials, and print and web materials. With this internship, Elina has drawn on a plethora of skills and techniques such as public relations, community outreach, audience research, data base experience, development and fundraising, grant writing, hospitality and customer service, knowledge of how to read riders and apply for visas for international artists.

Elina's internship was closely supervised by Sophia Barrett, FringeArts's Development Coordinator and Office Manager, who carries several years of experience in the theater and arts world. Beyond the countless hours that Ms. Barrett dedicated towards Elina's mentorship, she also provided our BAFF intern with a series of internship perks, including complimentary tickets to all FringeArts shows, a FringeAxis membership to our young friends group, a FringeArts annual membership, Intern seminars to learn about staff and their positions, Intern outings and socials to different cultural organizations in the city, restaurants, as well as a baseball game at the Philles stadium. Elina also traveled to attend other prominent culture festivals, including the FuseBox Festival, Big Ear, and Under the Radar. 

Elina didn't forget to leave her own footprint in Philly: through her promotion of the arts. "Half of my time at FringeArts I worked doing outreach - contacting very diverse communities in Philadelphia who had no idea FringeArts existed. I handed out both invitations and discount tickets and helped to increase the number of first-time audience as well as to involve the local communities in the creative activities." Her greatest influence during her internship was Jarrod Markman, her colleague and closest collaborator. "His working ethics and the level of involvement will be a huge inspiration for my future work," she says.

Now back at home, Elina's immediate plans are to do movie translations for Baltic Sea Docs and RIGA IFF, as well as a book translation for Zvaigzne ABC.  Her advice to future Fellows: "Explore as much as you possibly can, being a BAFF fellow is a unique opportunity to experience US at it's best. Be curious, proactive, willing to work hard, and definitely visit at least one National park!"

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09/25/2017

Greete Pork: Thinking Big in the Big Apple

Greete Pork has fulfilled a thrilling internship at Wharf Cat Records, a NYC record company involved in local distribution and live performances. Greete's role was to work directly with local retailers, while uncovering new local stores and helping to develop an innovative and more efficient form of delivery within a large metropolitan area. She frequently attended live shows to help better organize the labels' presence at the performances.  The most significant skills that Greete mastered during this internship were retail relations, local distribution, venue management, and direct sales.  She remained under the supervision of Trip Warner, who heads these and other operations within Wharf Cat Records, including Artists and Repertoire, Production and Art-Direction, and has produced over 100 releases over the last four years. Mr. Warner certainly had no challenge with integrating American cultural engagement into her experience, as 50% of her internship involved attending live performances. Greete also checked off numerous professional events from her "Professional Growth To-Do list", including MoMa PS1 record fair, Sacred Bones Records showcase and anniversary, Captured Tracks records summer meet-up sessions, and the Northside Festival. In addition, Greete volunteered her time and energy at various music events, and also helped the Anthology Film Archives to hold an Estonian movie week, introducing Estonian culture.

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Greete shares with us her greatest personal achievement during her stay in the US: "I feel I have grown so much as a person. Most importantly, I've learned to keep smiling while things are not OK for the sake of the team." As for her greatest professional achievement: "having my band here in NYC to record an album, and performing two shows here." She felt her greatest role model was Caleb Braaten, the owner of Sacred Bones Records. "He runs the best label in the world, and is so down-to-earth at the same time. He is Mr. Cool. His attention to detail, his devotion to his artists and their music, his ability to see the bigger picture and think outside of the box is truly inspiring. 10 years ago he started out in a basement of Academy Record store; today he collaborates with David Lynch. Everything is possible if you stay true to yourself." Her advice to future Fellows: "Be out there: as open and active as you can be and good things will happen. You'll never  know who or what is around the corner. Think big."

09/20/2017

PIP Justas Gratulevicius, promoting the stars!

Intern Justas Gratulevicius has taken his final bow as BAFF intern at We Are Free, an artist management company based out of New York. Justas's all-encompassing role handled the many facets of individual artists' or bands' careers including touring, merchandise, social media, and promotion. Justas also served as the company's eyes and ears outside of the office for discovering new music and venues, and keeping up-to-speed with the news of the music industry. His repertoire of expertise now includes advancing shows, creating and maintaining tour budgets, merchandising, social media and website management, tour scheduling, researching potential future clients, office management, and selling merchandise at the numerous shows they attend on a weekly basis.  Justas's internship was conducted by We Are Free Co-Managers Marley Harmon and Ben Rafson, who own several years of experience in the music industry. Beyond all the concerts that Justas attended in his role, he was also invited on corporate trips to museums, restaurants, and music business events.

Justas pinpoints his greatest achievement while in the US as being his contribution to the international launching of Jacques Greene's album, "Feel Infinite" (2017).  His greatest role model throughout his experience in the US goes to Ben Rafson, who has effectively and fruitfully shared with Justas all his insights about the music business.
 
Justas's final note for future Fellows is "be proactive and use all of the possibilities. There is no failure you can make, only the knowledge  that  it  doesn't  work  and  you  should try to do something different."
 
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09/18/2017

Janis Smits's Research Internship at University of New Mexico

Latvian PIP, Janis Smits, has enjoyed the ultimate research experience at University of New Mexico, Center for High Technology Materials, in Albuquerque. With a Master's in Science of Physics, Janis was involved in a new frontier of biomedical diagnostics research consisting of the detection of rare cell types and macromolecules in living humans aiming to create a noninvasive method of early cancer detection. A promising new detection modality involves labeling relevant cells/molecules with magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) and selectively detecting them by magnetic relaxometry. The specific work Janis was tasked with was MNPs based directly on their relaxation rate using a magneto-­microfluidic apparatus (which he designed and built). The overall goal of the research was to improve MNP probe homogeneity by orders of magnitude, an essential milestone on the path towards noninvasive detection of individual circulating MNP-­labeled tumor cells in humans. IMG_20170905_172317949

Janis was supervised by Professor Acosta, who has experience in training several dozen early-career scientists in the industry. In addition, Janis had the privilege of being mentored by a truly science-savvy team, including a postdoctoral fellow, expert in sensor physics, a research assistant professor, expert in condensed matter nanotechnology, and a tenured professor from the Pathology department, expert in cancer diagnosis. Janis found further enlightenment by attending the ENC-2017, a conference on Magnetic resonance techniques where he presented a poster on the latest results concerning solution NMR spectroscopy with NV centers, as well as numerous lectures and seminars held at UNM. At the outcome of his research, Janis's name was included in their research journal article (along with other team members) and published in a high-impact multidisciplinary journal. 

All work aside, Janis had the opportunity to join the team of scientists and attend the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, visit nearby sightseeing destinations, and engage with the culture of the American-Indian and Chicano communities.

Janis's biggest achievement during his stay in the US: "A paper coming out with me as a co-author was the biggest thing. Personally I am quite proud of the software I wrote that now runs a lot of the experiments done by the NV group at UNM." And who was the greatest influence for Janis? No surprise here: "Victor Acosta, hands down. He's constantly engaged with the research we're doing (I often received emails with ideas of what to try at odd hours of the day). I also found it inspiring how nothing seemed to get him down. Even when I was feeling genuinely depressed about not seeing signals, he would come back the next day pumped to try other things."

Finally, what did this adamant cyclist recommend to future fellows? "Get a drivers license before going to the States".

Thank you Janis for your commendable contribution to cancer research. We look forward to seeing your future achievements as a prolific researcher and BAFF alum!

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Janis next to a confocal microscope, used for interrogating NV centers in diamond.

 

09/15/2017

Kristina Gelzinyte and her internship at UCSB

Lithuanian intern, Kristina Gelzinyte, has spent her internship at the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB) working with professors James J. Speck and Claude Weisbuch. Kristina’s role was to investigate Auger current as an efficiency droop cause in light emitting diodes (LEDs) by studying hot electron distribution in nitride materials.

First, she had to prepare samples for experiments by making micrometer dimension contacts. She executed lithography and metal (gold, titanium, paladium) deposition in UCSB Nanotech clean room. Kristina processed both commercial and UCSB grown LEDs of green, blue, and violet colors. 

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Kristina is preparing samples for SiO2 deposition.
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The Nanotech clean room lithography bay deserted during the lunch time.
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LED lit up after successful processing.


After processing samples, she studied them by measuring quantum yield and electron photo- and electro-emission in ultra high vacuum chamber - which was a couple orders of magnitude higher than in outer space. This technique is unique because electrons are forced out of the material’s surface with a very strong electric field. This is possible because the surface is covered by cesium (Cs), which significantly decrease the force keeping electrons inside.

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Colleague Daniel is adjusting optical setup in the laboratory.
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Top-view of ultra high vacuum chamber. Picture awarded as a best UCSB Laboratory Instrument picture.

During the internship Kristina participated in The Solid-State Lighting and Energy Electronics Center (SSLEEC) conference, weekly Nitride Department and LEDs seminars, and local social events such as ice cream social and Christmas retreat, where she won a price for the best UCSB Laboratory Instrument picture. Also she volunteered in Santa Barbara Film Festival and got a peek at Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, and Denzel Washington.

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Kristina with her fellow volunteers at Santa Barbara Film Festival.

After tedious work at UCSB Kristina enjoyed lots of travel - visited 10 states in US, also Cuba and Mexico. Experiencing American culture was one of her passions. She celebrated Thanksgiving with a big beautiful American family - enjoying a huge turkey. Not to mention horseback riding in California mountains during the rain, shooting in a wild range, visiting a valley of poppies - California's state flower. And much more.

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Kristina had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner in Los Angeles.

“I’m so grateful to BAFF for my personal and professional experience. It was an extraordinary and inspiring year”, Kristina said about her internship.

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Kristina and her adventures.

09/07/2017

Vytautas Tamulenas: building highways and bridges (of culture) with Skanska

"It was the best professional as well as cultural experience in my life. The great environment at work, challenging tasks and highly experienced co-workers made my stay at SKANSKA so memorable and valuable. I have already received many inquiries to join one of the best companies in the field of Civil Engineering. This is only possible due to the great opportunity BAFF and CIEE have given to me," comments Vytautas Tamulenas from Lithuania, following his internship at the well-reputed Host Organization, Skanska in Boston. With a Master's in Structural Engineering, Bridges and Viaducts, Vytautas's skill set was a welcome asset at this high-ranking construction company. The focus of his training was to gain experiential expertise in Building Information Modeling (BIM), and in this role, Vytautas assisted Skanska's preconstruction team in creating construction sequences for large design-build and public-private partnerships in the Boston area and throughout the United States. He contributed to the designing of excavation, bracing, and other aspects of complex urban highway and building project, and learned to work with specialized software packages such as Civil 3D and 3DStudiomax to create 3D and 4D models. Vytautas can feel a sense of satisfaction knowing that he has left his professional footprint in building projects such as the Longfellow Bridge in Boston, the I-4 Ultimate Project in Florida, and the Allston Landing North Project in Boston. Throughout his internship, Vytautas was taken under the wing of  his supervisor, John Doiron, Skanska's CAD Manager, who considered our Lithuanian intern as part of the Skanska team, inviting him to company outings, team-building exercises with local charities, and professional sports games. However, special mention goes to the Vice President of Operations, Paul Pedini, whose unwavering support of the BAFF program made this life-altering internship a reality. 

After repatriation, Vytautas has already begun his pursuit of the ultimate position to fit his professional aspirations and freshly-gained experience in the US. "I have already received a lot of invitations to join the best civil engineering companies in Lithuania. Everyone is really fascinated about my experience in the U.S. in one of the best construction companies around the world. SKANSKA gave me an amazing kickoff for my future career and I am already starting to see the first benefits."

Me at workplace Skanska Waltham Office All Together




 

 

 

08/24/2017

In the words of PIP Anna Udre

First Chapter of One of the Greatest Journeys of my Life

By Anna Udre

On July 26th I celebrated my name day. It’s nothing special, but it’s nice, when people you love send greetings and good wishes from back home. July 26th wasn’t only my name day this year. It was also my one month anniversary of me being in the United States of America. Therefore, I took my time to reflect on what had happened in 30 days of my time being here.

Moving is both exciting and traumatic

Before arriving to Washington D.C. I had already imagined how it would be. It wasn’t my first time traveling, I had traveled alone to most exotic places in Africa and Asia, I had lived in Sweden for six months, I had slept in forests of Norway for a week, etc. What could surprise me? As the day of departure came closer, I was feeling very confident about myself. The difference was that I was moving away from home for a year (I had never been away from Latvia for such a long time). It only hit me, when I was saying goodbye to my parents and my dog at the airport at around 5 AM, that this was going to be life-changing, and it’s going to be the biggest change so far. I won’t come back as the same person, and nothing will ever be the same. That was an overwhelming feeling. Photo_1Since my internship had to start only after the 4th of July celebration, I had a week to organize my stuff and get used to the environment. But days went by fast. I had to make a bank account, get a new sim card, pay my first deposit for the room I was renting etc. During my first days I also went to have coffee with my employer and his friends. After meeting my boss-to-be I was very much looking forward to starting my internship at Joint Baltic American National Committee, even though I still had very little knowledge of what was I going to do there. Photo_2After two days of excitement and getting done all the practical stuff, I got really sick. There was no real explanation for that. Long story short – I spent over 24 hours with over 40 degrees before spending a night at a hospital. Turns out I was dehydrated, even though I believe I drank enough water. It was an experience, that made me realize - hospitals in the U.S. don’t really differ from the ones back in Latvia, but they’re hundred times more expensive. Good thing we have the insurance here, but this was a very tough first lesson – look after your health, be careful, and don’t end up paying too much for medicine here!

The capital for Latvians – Baltimore

After two days of suffering from fever I went to D.C. to meet some of my friends, who were visiting. The weather in summer here is tropical – it’s around 35 degrees and it’s really humid. Even though I was a bit cautious with exposing myself to the world (I really did feel like breaking free after spending three days behind closed walls), the excitement of enjoying the sun, the hot weather, the city and friends was real. And since the weekend of the 4th of July was coming up, people were happy and enjoying the great weather. Photo_3My friends were working as teachers at “Garezers” at that time. It’s the biggest summer camp for American Latvians up north, and they all had arrived to the east coast because of the Singing and Dancing festival. My next destination was Baltimore, where the festival took place.

I had no idea, where I was going to stay, what exactly I was going to see, where to go, but I knew the moment I got there, that I was going to have a great time. The city was packed with Latvians from all over the U.S. and some even from Latvia. Since I couldn’t get hold of my friends at first, I made friends with some Latvian-Americans  and went to see “Sola” concert with them. It was incredibly beautiful – to be surrounded by Latvians and listening to one of the greatest choirs of Latvia performing great songs. By the way one of my ex-classmates was singing in the choir. It was all simply magical. Photo_4I planned to spend only one evening and one night in Baltimore, but I ended up spending two days and nights there. The things I experienced are indescribable. Latvian-Americans are very proud of their ancestry. Even though most of them have been to Latvia only when they were very little, they know all the Latvian songs, they know how to dress traditionally and the list continues. During my days in Baltimore I made a lot of new friends, sang Latvian songs on the street, in hotel halls, danced to Latvian songs, listened to poetry and prose in Latvian etc. One of the highlights of this event was the final concert of the festival, where everyone was singing “Saule, Pērkons, Daugava” together. It’s a very special song, and it sounded as special here in the U.S. as it does back in Latvia. I felt like home. Photo_5Latvian heading to Congress

After experiencing all that first week had brought to me, I felt ready to start my internship. The night before that, I went to the national Mall to watch the 4th of July fireworks together with thousands of Americans and tourists, who had come together for this special occasion. Even though I’m not the biggest fan of fireworks, I have to admit that this really was special. I had never seen anything close as beautiful (if we’re talking about fireworks) before. It was a perfect ending to my arrival week. I had experienced a lot already, it was time to get to work. Photo_6On my first day of internship I learned that there will be “office days” and “city days”. On first ones we’ll be doing more practical and organizational stuff, whereas on others we’ll be “running around” D.C. for meetings, conferences, seminars, and other events. I learned that there are no certain tasks for me – everything mostly depends on my initiative to do stuff. And that was great news, because I had the freedom not only to  achieve what I thought would be relevant for the place I was working for, but also for me personally. To add, my boss and other interns at Joint Baltic American National Committee (JBANC) were all great – friendly, helpful and with a sense of humor. Photo_7First three weeks of my internship passed by quickly. They were hectic, exciting, overwhelming, amazing, educational, and dynamic. If you’re interested in politics, then this is the place to be. Washington D.C. is the city of opportunities. Greatest speakers come here to talk about various international affairs topics, high level people from different countries are here to express their opinion and represent their home country, you can easily meet diplomats, great professionals and influential thinkers here. And that’s exactly, what I experienced during my first weeks of internship.

What JBANC does on daily basis, is advocating the Baltic nations. The goal is to represent the Baltic-American communities and to help coordinate their activities with the U.S. Congress and administration and its related agencies in conjunction with issues related to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Therefore we attend all the relevant events, that take place in Washington D.C., we keep in touch with all three embassies of the Baltic states, and we meet regularly with other, who support the same goals.

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During my first weeks the biggest issue was the Russia sanctions bill that the House of Representatives needed to support. The JBANC team worked very hard to lobby for this bill, and therefore one of my first tasks was to hand out letters to congressional staffers (to pass to their representatives) to support the bill. There are a total of 535 Members of Congress. 100 serve in the U.S. Senate and 435 serve in the U.S. House of Representatives. We went to all 435 offices to hand out the personalized letters and talk about why it’s important to support the bill. It was pretty challenging since it was my first time actually lobbying something "on frontline". And it was endlessly exciting. Photo_9Seize all opportunities and say “yes”

What I’ve understood here, is that I’m not only representing myself here. I’m representing my country. Whatever I do, say or perform, for many people it will leave an impression of Latvia, because I might be the only person they’ll ever meet from there. And that’s something, that makes you “straighten your back”, be more confident and show the best side of yourself. It’s an honor.Photo_10Even though work is extremely exciting here, that shouldn’t take up everything else. It’s important to go out, meet new people, make friends, go on trips together and experience this country from other sides, too. You can never know, where one “yes” will take you. And it has happened to me many times here already. Photo_11I’ve met great people here, some of whom were simply strangers sitting next to me at one of the events. It’s all part of discovering this culture – through people, food, stuff they like doing. And I’ve come to a conclusion, that the U.S. is filled with so many different people, that you can’t really generalize anything here. State differs from state, even cities differ a lot. And people have ancestors from all over the world, therefore each one of them brings something different to here. And that’s what makes this country so interesting and at the same time challenging to be at. I can’t be happier about having this experience, and I’m looking forward to having on of the greatest years of my life!

Research Scholar, Dalia Bankauskaite, at CEPA

Lithuanian Research Scholar, Dalia Bankauskaite, has spent the past year conducting her research project at Center for European Policy Analysis in Washington DC. The title of her research was Public diplomacy and Society's Resilience to Information Warfare, which was supervised by A. Wess Mitchell, President of  the Center for European Policy.  With this topic, she would "map the vulnerability of Lithuanian society to the information warfare, especially focusing on the Russian speaking population and the society groups which use Russian as their second language and prefer the Russian language media." She observed "the US experience in public diplomacy design and implementation" in order to draft possible plans of diplomacy to build resilience to information warfare.  Ms. Bankauskaite serves as Advisor to the Information and Communication Department of the Lithuanian Parliament, and headed the EU Public Information Unit under the Lithuanian Government in preparation for  its joining the EU.

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Dalia Bankauskaite at a CEPA round-table discussion titled What does the Kremlin fear? New insights and techniques from the digital frontline

What are your immediate plans when you return back home? To continue as an Adjunct Fellow at CEPA, teaching at Vilnius University, and let's not forget my summer holiday.

List some professional events which you have attended during your stay in the US. I have attended a number of round table discussions, panels, and conferences organized at CEPA and other think tanks situated in Washington DC, such as Atlantic Council, Hudson Institute, Heritage Foundation, McCain Institute, etc.

List some ways in which you had an impact on your local US community (i.e. volunteering, professional research, civic engagement). I conducted research on disinformation techniques. I handled the regular monitoring and briefing of the Washington DC Community on the Kremlin disinformation cases in Lithuania.  I contributed to the research methodology for disinformation impact to the society. I developed and implemented the agenda for the field trips of the U.S. political analysts to the Baltic States (3 trips). I reported on the Russia's culture of strategic thinking. I am also a Board member of Washington DC Lithuanian Professionals Club.

List one personal and one professional achievement for you during your time in the US. My report on the Russia's culture of strategic think about war, as well as my contribution to the design of CEPA StratCom program.

Name a person who was the greatest influence for you in the US. A. Wess Mitchell, President of CEPA; Peter B. Doran Executive Vice President and Interim Director in CEPA

What advice would you offer for future BAFF fellows? Have a very clear focus of your research; make sure that the receiving party will help you to navigate in your professional circles and be a partner in your research. DSC_0796

08/23/2017

Research Scholar, Arturas Jukna, shares his BAFF experience

Lithuanian Research Scholar, Arturas Jukna, considered his year-long research period at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Rochester remarkably fruitful. With a career of over 30 years as a researcher,  Professor Jukna has served as the Head of the Department of Physics at Vilnius Gediminas Technical University since 2007, and is author and coauthor to nearly 80 scientific publications. The title of his research project is "The Investigation of Electric Properties of Devices made of Superconductor by means of THz Radiation." This technical research was supervised by Professor Roman Sobolewski, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Physics, and scientific reviewer and consultant for government agencies, journals and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. 

20170201_UofR_ECE_THzSeminar (26)What are your immediate plans when you return to Lithuania? To join the community of Vilnius Gediminas Technical University; and  to publish scientific papers based on experimental results obtained in research laboratories during my stay in the US.

List some professional events which you have attended during your stay in the U.S. IEEE-NEMS 2017 Conference at UCLA Los Angeles; the 75th Device Research Conference at the University of Notre Dame.  

List some ways in which you had an impact on your local U.S. community. My foremost impact on the local US community is related to scientific research of electric and optical properties of smart materials. I was also involved in training of University students about these research topics.

Name a person who was the greatest influence for you in the U.S. Prof. Roman Sobolewski, our research group leader.

What advice would you offer for future BAFF fellows? The opportunity of BAFF scholarship is great. Use this opportunity as soon as possible and enjoy your time in the US working for most advanced companies, making experiments in the most advanced research laboratories, and getting experience in the leading Universities in the US.

PIP Robert Reidla's internship at Elegran

Estonian intern, Robert Reidla, has just completed his BAFF-funded internship at Elegran Real Estate in New York City. His year-long training in Digital Marketing, gave him first-hand experience in all aspects of marketing, from concept to execution, and analysis of each marketing channel, including email marketing, direct mailers, online campaigns, and Search Engine Marketing. Robert can now boast great expertise in SEO, SMM, Conversion Analysis, Real Estate and Business Strategy, all thanks to the close supervision of Tigh Loughhead, Elegran's Head of Marketing.  Tigh has over five years of experience in Online Advertising, Project Management, Consulting and Web Development, developed through a mastery of Digital Media, Listings Syndication, SEO, SEM, Pay Per Click, Email Marketing, Reputation Management, Social Media Marketing and Print Advertising campaigns. Tigh had no difficulties with engaging Robert in cultural and corporate activities, as Elegran has a very large and gregarious employee community that enjoys corporate parties and restaurant outings on the New York scene.    IMG_0379
What are your immediate plans when you return back home? I will start working 2 days after my arrival.

List some professional events which you have attended during your stay in the US.  Salesforce Pardot User Group meetings, Meetup.com meetups of tech and marketing,  Salesforce WorldTour 2017

List some ways in which you had an impact on your local US community (i.e. volunteering, professional research, civic engagement). I volunteered in a soup kitchen in Lower East Side Manhattan.  It was an unique experience that I will never forget.

List one personal and one professional achievement for you during your time in the US. Professional achievement: I learned a lot about the real  estate  industry  in  New York and also reached and exceeded my initially set goal and expectations for digital marketing KPIs in Elegran.

Name a person who was the greatest influence for you in the US.  My mentor Tigh Loughead, who is a very influential person in the real estate marketing tech industry in USA. Through him, I expanded my professional network and also learned a lot about digital marketing.

What advice would you offer for future BAFF fellows?
Be sure where and who you want to be by the end of your internship. Set goals and stick to them. If  you're  feeling  useless,  be  proactive  and  show  initiative.  Don't  be  afraid  to  fail. Also,  stand  up  for  yourself  and  don't  let  bosses  use  you -  think  of  yourself  as a professional who should be treated equally with full-time employees. And  don't forget to travel and experience different parts of US!