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Malaysia Team Internship student reflections – part 4

"It was an impactful life experience that will never be forgotten."

In a series of blog posts we are currently revealing our students’ experiences during the Trimester 1, 2016 Malaysia Team Internship. The third group has prepared a blog post about their cultural experiences in Malaysia.

Organised by the Faculty of Business of Law Work Integrated Learning team, the program is a fantastic opportunity for undergraduate students of all disciplines and takes place in Malaysia twice a year (Penang and Kuala Lumpur).

Students are enrolled in the Team Internship unit (MWL301), which provides an opportunity to gain academic credit, while travelling the world.

For details about the Malaysia Team Internships visit our Enhance your Study website.

2016 Timfam cultural experiences blog

Team members: Peter Robertson, Radhika Singh, Sajda Yakub, Waseem Sohail

We had just arrived in George Town, Penang and it was humid! Our internship experience had officially commenced, and we were ready for an adventure. 

It was scorching hot in George Town. We came from a blistery cold Melbourne to a smoldering hot sun with 33-degree heat and humidity. We were feeling the heat and started to search for a place to quench our hunger and thirst. It was closing time for restaurants and cafés around Penang as it was the holy month of Ramadan. We were struggling on our first day to find somewhere to take us in, and then we stumbled across an owner who saw us approach as she was closing up shop. This is where our true experience of Malaysian culture began. 

Little did we know, we had just staggered into a Malaysian gastronomical gem. Julian, the chef and owner of Yella Fork, was one in a million. She brought a flowering thunder of vitality, hospitality and openness to us all.

Julian was born in Malaysia, however is a former Melbournian, who came back to Penang with the dream of starting her own restaurant in George Town, purely based on Australian cuisine. She made our travels safe and even gave us the ability to network with her on a night out doing Karaoke. 

The internship was quite intensive, with work from 9 am to 5.30 pm each day, however there were a few public holidays that we took advantage of to go sightseeing around Penang. This included the famous Penang Hill and its attractions, the Kek Lok Si temple, as well as exploring George Town’s heritage area trying to unravel the locations of the 52 heritage artworks hidden in the side streets. 

The Malaysia Team Internship was an impactful life experience that will never be forgotten. Working in an unfamiliar country in an unaccustomed corporate environment is quite challenging, however, in the end, we were able to immerse ourselves into the Malaysian culture while creating lifelong friends. 

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