Just before I began the internship I became aware of the EY International Intern Leadership Conference. This is a weeklong global intern event which is held in Disney World, Orlando, Florida involving 3000 EY interns from 150 countries around the world, with two being chosen from Ireland. Through a process involving a video application, interview, and presentation, I was lucky enough to be chosen with one other Irish intern. The first three days were designated to the ‘International’ interns, i.e. the interns not from the United States. Our days involved various workshops such as leadership and soft skill training. We were also given a day and a half to explore Universal Studios, which was gleefully accepted by the international interns. Much like the culture of friendliness and teamwork that I had experienced in Ireland, this culture was transferrable across all of the nationalities we met, with many friends being made along the way who I still have regular contact with.
When the American interns arrived Disneyworld became a much busier place. The week was engineered for you to meet as many people as possible, with different tables being assigned to you for every meal and event. This gave you the prospect to mix with a vast variety of people from every culture. Every person I met was outgoing, kind, and respectful. They were keen to get involved in all events, and share their beliefs and values with me. The workshops were insightful and relevant , with key speakers teaching us about the ground breaking research that they carried out, to motivational speakers urging us to never lose sight of what makes us, us. I learned an extraordinary amount from the workshops, but the amount I learned from the other interns themselves cannot be underestimated.
Nobody more so embodied the positive and open attitude of EY than CEO, Mark Weinberger, who spoke to us at the final dinner. He stayed behind for hours afterwards, talking with and getting to know the interns. People were blown away by his humility and his genuine wish to create a Better Working World. Although the event only lasted a week, friendships had quickly formed with people from every corner of the globe. Even though the distances may be far, the world seemed a lot smaller knowing that they too were embarking on their EY journey. The IILC is an incredible showcase of ability from EY, it allows interns to learn from leaders within the firm and network with their peers, encouraging them to be the future leaders of EY.
Watch the 2015 IILC at:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPVlGiVekDI