Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Indie Guide Thailand: Where Interns Live in Bangkok for Cheap

Cheap Accommodation for Intern Living in Bangkok

 (Like the dress? Bangkok shopping is one of the best, after HK of course)

I saw that someone google searched "where do UN interns live in Bangkok" and found my blog. Apologies for the utter waste of time that google hit put you on. I have never written about where I lived in Bangkok as an intern with the IOM (not UN btw) but I will make it up to you because I do indeed have theeeee most ultimate gem in the world for Bangkok living on the cheap.

Sathorn Saint View: 
201/1 Sathorn Soi 17 Sathorn
Bangkok 10120
Phone: 66 2 675 8921 - 27
Fax: 66 2 212 1231
Email: sathornsaintview@yahoo.com


This place was a thriving cesspool of interns. I made all my friends there and we had the craziest times in Bangkok. We had the same lifestyle, lived together and really I don't know if I would've had the same experience if I hadn't stayed there.

The cheapest room available is for 6000 Baht/month and you pay for electricity and internet on top of that. It comes with a mini fridge, hot water, a large bed, fresh towels and sheets. There is no kitchen and it's considered a serviced apartment.  For short term intern living it is perfect. Everything is clean and new and the best part is that there is a pool on the roof! Also a crap ass gym. It was a 20 minute walk away from where I worked on Silom Road and you can access the Sky train within 5 minutes too. It is very central and I think the best you can find in that area.

Bad parts about it: the management can be complete wankers. You are not allowed to have guests on the roof unless you ask for permission before hand. I asked them to use the microwave and they tried to charge for that. It's just small things like their pettiness that make it sort of annoying but if you were on a 5 USD/day stipend like I was than you learn to swallow your temper..

Hope this was helpful! I write this as I sit in a restaurant in Koh Phangan trying to freelance edit to make money while I job hunt!! I am hopefully interviewing for a UN consulting position in Bangkok next week. Wish me luck!!


More on Bangkok..

 Indie Guide: Nightlife and Tips for Getting in for Free


Indie Guide Shopping Bangkok: Best Markets

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Indie Guide Thailand: Cheap Accommodation in Koh Phangan

Haad Rin Beach Resort: Some of the cheapest accommodation you'll find in the main area

This is one of the best hidden gems of Haad Rin Beach and I believe the cheapest bungalows you can find in the main Full Moon Party beach area. I've stayed there twice now, and I'm not going to lie, it's kind of the projects but you know when you're backpacking, stacked with student loans and earning a local salary at your internship, it's the best bang for your buck so you get over it.



It's located on the hill and you have one of the most glorious views of the island. Waking up mid afternoon after partying till 9 am and seeing the blue ocean at you're feet will cure your hangover instantly (okay, that's a lie. Only Pad Thai + coconut shakes can do that duh). It's very basic inside with a large bed (can definitely fit three people on it) or 2 single beds, and a cold water shower. 

Each bungaglow is sort of unique, it's hit or miss with the quality. For instance, the one I'm staying in right now is extremely clean and large with a great view. Downside? We can't use our toilet. No biggie. Our friends next to us have a functioning toilet but crappy view and yesterday morning 2 cats fell through the roof and almost died etc. But besides these minor details and if you're not scared of the occasional grotesque hairy spider it really isn't that bad. I know I haven't talked this place up very well but really, you spend most of your days and nights outside, it doesn't matter where you stay. Save your money for buckets. I actually love the simplicity and beauty of the place. It feels like a tree house!


There is no booking in advance and the place usually fills up 3 days before the Full Moon Party. Because it's so well hidden though it's one of the last places to fill it up. I'm probably screwing myself over by blogging about this but as always, it's my duty to share the secrets of cheap travel being thee ultimate Johnny Cheapo myself. Anyhoo, party mammals, have the best time ever while in Koh Phangan.


Haad Rin Beach Resort
Price: 300 Baht/night
 Directions: Tell the taxi Neptune Villa. It is just past that and it's on the same street as  the legendary Same Same Burger. 10 minute walk from Full Moon Party beach
No Booking in Advance.

More on the Full Moon Party

The Party that doesn't End: Video  

Full Moon Party Moments


Getting there from Malaysia


Music: La Vie Moderne

By Logo off of Kitsune label, sexy electro

Download: La Vie Moderne- Logo


Friday, March 18, 2011

Full Moon Party: The Video

Koh Phangan: The Party with no End

I'm sitting in a restaurant in Koh Phangan right now watching BBC news (should I be surprised that Germany abstained in the UN action against Gaddafi?). It's noon and I haven't yet gone to sleep. I know The Beach kind of ruined the appeal of this place for many (I definitely was deterred) but honestly, I love this island now. Everyone has so much energy all the time, it's truly unparalleled around the world.

Here's a peak at what this cussin' crazy night, famous around the world for its debauchery looks like. In four words: IT DID NOT END. I kept trying to go home and found myself in a million after parties. The sun got hot, it became that late in the day. Can't wait for tomorrow night. Wonder if it will be as mental! If you are in Thailand and love partying I seriously hope you consider trying it out.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

How to Get an Internship with the UN + 2 Internship Offers

Getting an Internship Abroad and With the UN


Hey, so one of the main questions eager new graduates (especially in my field, international relations) ask is how can one score a ballin' internship with the UN. I'm writing this because well, I've seen in the NY Times that kids are PAYING agents to find unpaid internships (read article, here). As a povo graduate with student loans past my face I say eff that noize.

Anyways, I've seen several ways and I know what worked for me so I'm going to share it with you and uh.. I'm also going to post 2 offers for internships. I'm posting it here because if you are reading this blog, chances are you an intelligent student or young adult with a love of life and gets thrills from discovery of other cultures. You are also into social media to some extent which is important for one of the internships.

I mean, I know doing an unpaid internship is the opposite of helping you pay off school loans and stuff, but seriously besides an exchange, it's one of the best things you can do for your career, life experience, social life and assuaging your affinity for adventure.


The day we all wore stripes to office by accident. Obviously needed a picture. #workinghard

I'll keep it short because I'm kind of at my UN internship now (last week, ahh what next, omg, but seriously, what next etc.).


1. Email every country office you can. This is what my fellow intern colleagues did and they got several responses. It's easy, you go on the website of the UN agency and the country you're interested in, find the email address and tell them you are interested in internship opportunities. Trust me, these UN agencies are dying for your brain. Someone will reply.

2. Email specific people. This is what I recommended to my school mates to do and it worked. They went to the country specific office 's website of the agency they liked, then found the project that interested them most. Most UN websites have this information about projects displayed (I think) and then you can find the name of the person who is the CTA (Chief technical adviser) of the project. With your honed research skills you'll be able to dig up their email. When you've done that, impress the pants off of them saying you are interested in their project and that you have done work in their field before, or have written papers, volunteered etc. It's your chance to show your specific knowledge and puts you directly in contact with the person who has the power to take you on.

3. Network, network, network! Take business cards like mad and email them up when you are looking for an internship. I was with the IOM in Bangkok last summer and just by chance I met the director from the office I'm at now at a conference. I emailed him after I graduated and he put me in contact with the CTA of the project I'm with now. So voila, there's the story of how I ended up in Jakarta. I love business cards and you should too. Attend conferences at your university or put on in your city and go talk to the guest speakers, people attending etc. after.

4. Word of mouth. Hanging around UN people in positions of power, you'll find out how many opportunities there are and they'll be completely useless because you are already being exploited at your current internship. If I hadn't sworn off this current thing as my last internship EVER I would be mega interested in another one. Anyways, I'm making that whole word of mouth thing accessible to you. Check out below for the offers. Good luck and please let me know how it goes! I hope I've done my duty of inputting into the eternal circle of internship.

Also, please pass on to your ambitious, smart friends!


Offers for Internship
ps. In a nutshell, they want native English speakers and starting very very soon.


Position:        Communications and Outreach Intern
Duration:      no less than six weeks and no more than six months
Dates:             As soon as possible
Salary:           Unpaid
Location:       Jakarta, Indonesia
Supervisor:   UNV/UNDP Programme Officer




Background

UNDP Office has organised internship programme to provide a framework by which students from diverse academic backgrounds may be assigned to UNDP offices, where their educational experience can be enhanced through practical work assignments as well providing an opportunity to make substantive contributions to an office’s work. The current internship will provide opportunity for student to learn and gain practical experience in the field of communication and outreach.

Tasks

·      Researching and writing communication material
·      Assisting in developing partnerships with mass media to generate and maintain public interest and advocate for further promotion of volunteerism
·      Assisting in planning and updating content for UNV Indonesia social media tools such as Facebook and Twitter
·      Supporting the UNV COT with events and campaigns
·      Maintaining and updating UNV website
·      Gathering information for journalists
·      Other tasks assigned

Outputs
·      Effective support to UNV programme in increasing visibility of volunteerism contribution towards peace and development tin Indonesia
·      Effective support in developing and maintaining partnership with media


Qualifications
·      Enrolment in a graduate-level degree programme in business administration, or other related field. Not have graduated prior to the beginning of the internship.
·      Strong communication skills, especially writing skills
·      Fluency in English. Knowledge of Bahasa Indonesia considered to be an advantage
·      Ability to gather information quickly, and prepare in various written formats
·      Experience working in with media
·      Computer literate in standard software applications
·      Demonstrated keen interest in the work of the UN, and of UNV and UNDP in particular, and have a personal commitment to UNDP's Statement of Purpose  and to the ideals of the UN Charter
·      Demonstrated the ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views. Strong interpersonal skills
·      An interest in global mobility; adaptability to varied physical and other environments; a desire to work with and gain the confidence and respect of people with different language, national and cultural backgrounds.

Financial Issues
Interns are not financially remunerated by UNDP.

All costs connected with an intern's participation in the Programme must be borne by:
a)     the nominating institution, related institution or government, which may provide the required financial assistance to its students;
b)    the student, who will have to obtain financing for subsistence and make his/her own arrangements for travel (including to and from the office), visas, accommodation, etc.


Application procedure
Interested applicants are advised to follow application instructions as detailed on http://www.undp.or.id/internships/.






Position:        Research and Policy Analysis Intern
Duration:      no less than six weeks and no more than six months
Dates:             As soon as possible
Salary:           Unpaid
Location:       Jakarta, Indonesia
Supervisor:   UNV/UNDP Programme Officer




Background

UNDP Office has organised internship programme to provide a framework by which students from diverse academic backgrounds may be assigned to UNDP offices, where their educational experience can be enhanced through practical work assignments as well providing an opportunity to make substantive contributions to an office’s work.

Tasks
·      Conduct background research on state of volunteerism in Indonesia
·      Assist in conducting background research on volunteerism-related policy framework in Indonesia
·      Compile research findings and drafting reports
Conduct research and propos feasible concepts for diversification of volunteer modalities (e.g. corporate volunteerism, online volunteering) and development of new joint initiatives with academia, private sector, civil society etc
·      Other tasks assigned

Outputs
·      Effective support to UNV programme in its policy and research-related efforts.
·      Effective support in developing new joint projects


Qualifications
·      Enrolment in a graduate-level degree programme in business administration, or other related field. Not have graduated prior to the beginning of the internship.
·      Strong communication skills, especially writing skills
·      Fluency in English. Knowledge of Bahasa Indonesia considered to be an advantage
·      Ability to gather information quickly, and prepare in various written formats
·      Strong experience in conducting background research
·      Computer literate in standard software applications
·      Demonstrated keen interest in the work of the UN, and of UNV and UNDP in particular, and have a personal commitment to UNDP's Statement of Purpose  and to the ideals of the UN Charter
·      Demonstrated the ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views. Strong interpersonal skills
·      An interest in global mobility; adaptability to varied physical and other environments; a desire to work with and gain the confidence and respect of people with different language, national and cultural backgrounds.

Financial Issues
Interns are not financially remunerated by UNDP.

All costs connected with an intern's participation in the Programme must be borne by:
a)     the nominating institution, related institution or government, which may provide the required financial assistance to its students;
b)    the student, who will have to obtain financing for subsistence and make his/her own arrangements for travel (including to and from the office), visas, accommodation, etc.


Application procedure
Interested applicants are advised to follow application instructions as detailed on http://www.undp.or.id/internships/.

Intern Music
The interns and I found ourselves singing this song constantly as we walked down Rat Alley, ate on the dirty streets, and had to talk our way into expensive clubs. But we knew it was all worth it and that one day we'd be.. Dedicated to J, A, C-bro, Clara, Saki, Hani.







If you find yourself interning in Jakarta, (congrats) check out also..