Tag: tourism internship

solimar international internship world

At Solimar International, we hold three virtual internship programs every spring, summer and fall that are dedicated to advancing future sustainable tourism industry leaders. In this blog, two of our Summer 2022 share their experiences working on different tourism development projects around the world.

1. Reflections from Isaac Herzog, student at Cornell University and Solimar Summer 2022 Intern:

My Relationship with Timor-Leste

Timor-Leste is a small country in the Pacific Ocean that many in the West have never heard of. Populated by many Austronesian peoples, the island of Timor already had rich traditions by the time it was colonized by the Dutch and Portuguese. After the country gained its independence from the Portuguese empire, Indonesia’s Suharto regime quickly stepped in and took over the country in a bloody war. Finally gaining independence in 2002, Timor-Leste is now a developing nation with a population of about 1.3 million people.

The nation is divided into 14 municipalities. One such division, Ataúro, is an island off the north coast of Dili, the capital city. Ataúro is unique in so many ways and has so much to teach the world. This summer in my internship at Solimar International, I helped the team support ATKOMA, a Destination Management Organization (DMO) based on Ataúro.

Although all I had heard about Timor-Leste before this summer, I was fascinated by the burgeoning nation as I learned more. How small nations’ economies function, what public infrastructure is like, the maritime history, etc. always interested me in regards to small nations, and Timor-Leste was no exception. So, when prompted in the internship application what area I would most like to work with, I jumped at the opportunity to work with Timor-Leste, learn as much as I could about the nation, and help in any way that I could.

Timor-Leste on a map

Challenges Going In

Having never worked in tourism previously and having very little knowledge about Timor-Leste beforehand, I was ill-prepared for the realities of tourism on the island. Firstly, the island is incredibly small and sparsely populated. As it is one of the smaller provinces of an already small country, Ataúro’s population is around 10,000 people; and half are subsistence farmers. This means that half of Ataúro’s population is not considered to be “economically active” because they don’t have incomes and don’t, en masse, participate in markets (literal and economic). Instead, such folks grow, produce, kill, or catch their own food.

Secondly, there aren’t grocery stores, fast food chains, bars, or even really any shops. Most shopping on the island is done at the Beloi Market–the largest on the island–held every Thursday and Saturday. If not there, each village or community usually has markets, some artisanal store to sell handmade goods like baskets and pots, or else you’d have to know someone to make you what you need.

In short, the island functions differently from the life that many visitors come from. And indeed, that is so much of the appeal to visitors of Ataúro: the detachment from the world; the idyllic and untouched land; calm and relaxed days; no sounds of car horns.

The Solimar International Internship

With such an international focus, Solimar International is a truly virtual company with staff members connecting from around the world. This meant that my internship was done through Slack and Zoom. Throughout the summer, I sat in apartments, cafes, and park benches to do my work. Looking back, my internship naturally had several epochs, each more rewarding than the next. 

remote internship solimar international
The internship is 100% remote!

First two weeks

To be expected, the first two weeks consisted of getting my sea legs, both for Solimar and Timor-Leste. When I was accepted into my internship, I was told I would work mostly with a company on Ataúro Island. After the first meeting, then, I spent several days doing Wikipedia dives, reading articles, and learning what there was to know about Timor Leste and Ataúro. The student that I am, I wanted to ensure that whatever work I produced for Solimar and ATKOMA would be properly informed, historically, culturally, linguistically, and otherwise. Plus, I elected to work with Timor Leste due to my interest, and I wanted to use this learning period to satiate my curiosity.

It was during this first week that I got a sense for the task that would be ahead of me. I found that there was in fact very little about Ataúro on the internet in the way of tourism. Most articles were either from ataurotourism.org, ATKOMA’s own site, or else Wikipedia. There were some scientific-catered pages, most discussing Ataúro’s hyper-biodiverse waters, but I could find very little travel advice. It was then clear to me why Solimar was hoping to have me aid with social media creation and blog writing. One of the most important tasks going forth was to improve ATKOMA’s presence online and to build its rapport.

After garnering a little background info on the country and island, I dove into meetings with the two women I would spend the rest of the summer working with. My two mentors, one who led my team of interns and the other who was heavily involved in ATKOMA, had a meeting with me to explain Solimar’s inner workings, what they wanted me to do this summer, and how they were going to support me. Feeling prepared, properly instructed, and pretty excited, I set out on my first tasks.

Continuing into the internship

Once I’d done some intro tasks, gotten to know my mentors, and learned the internal communication services, I was working daily in a coffee shop in my hometown. A significant portion of my work was blog writing, so each day I sat down at a cafe and wrote. I boosted ATKOMA’s social media presence as well, using Instagram and Facebook to improve their presence and recognition. At the same time, I chatted with a gentleman who’s been living on Ataúro for several years working as a dive instructor, hoping to hear a personal account of life on the island. I reached out to photographers via social media to hopefully increase our photo banks, as promoting the island is infinitely more effective if people can see its beauty.

Most rewarding in this middle period of my internship was sitting in on several decision-making Zoom calls and being a part of the mental calculus that Solimar made in our support of ATKOMA. The calls were attended by several of my superiors, the CEO of our company, and some members of ATKOMA, calling in from Ataúro. I found these calls very informative and rewarding, because while I had been effectively working for this local DMO, I finally got to hear some of their internal workings, learn about the nature of their business, their finances, and how Solimar interacts with its partners.

Beautiful white sand beaches of Ataúro Island

Final Days

Throughout my internship, I fell increasingly in love with the work I was doing for Solimar and ATKOMA. Every day, I looked forward to going to my same cafe, getting my same drink, talking with my mentors, writing, posting, and problem-solving. Whether I was writing a blog on doing a homestay in Ataúro, posting on Instagram asking folks to comment their best experiences on the island, or researching payment gateways, every day was a thrill.

By the end, I had written a handful of blogs that I was really proud of, steadily increased ATKOMA’s social media presence, and been an omnipresent aid to my mentors (I’d like to think). As the final weeks of my internship came, I was moving back to my university for my final year, recruiting for my choral group, all the while working for Solimar. It was during these hectic weeks that I came to reflect on all that I’ve learned.

Outcomes from interning at Solimar International

Having never worked in tourism before, my knowledge of the industry was deepened significantly this summer. But, though I learned about sustainable tourism, how to support communities’ DMOs, and the reality of international funding for such projects, most of my takeaways from this internship were what I learned from ATKOMA, Ataúro, and Timor Leste.

From my own work with ATKOMA, I learned that small communities can be economically revitalized with tourism, all while still respecting native traditions. Ataúro’s small villages and communities have indubitably become more viable and brought folks out of poverty by welcoming tourists, all the while asking them to respect the land, water, biodiversity, and way of life.

I also learned small business planning from ATKOMA and policies for small economies from Ataúro. A small organization on a small island in a small country, there are a lot of challenges that the DMO faces: how to hire skilled workers, how to accept payments from abroad, and how to advise on travel when the infrastructure is poor. These and many other questions that ATKOMA asked itself (and Solimar) brought me more perspective about small businesses, which I know are skills to bring into my future.

Additionally, this intern cohort also taught me valuable skills going forth. My fellow interns exposed me to different writing styles; showed me how they balanced travel, life, and work (something I had to learn myself); and brought their different experiences and perspectives into our work. 

Finally, it’s hard to overstate how influential and kind my two mentors were to me. Jenny and Chloe, both taught me so much about the industry, life after academics, how to balance life and work, and the importance of loving your work.

My internship with Solimar has been the most rewarding work I’ve put forth in my career thus far, and I very much hope to follow this career path in the future. 

Isaac Herzog, Solimar International Intern
Isaac Herzog, Summer 2022 Solimar International Intern

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2. Reflections from Miles Rieker, student at UNC Chapel Hill and Summer 2022 Intern:

Upon applying for the Solimar internship, I knew very little about the company. I had taken a business course at my university the semester before, and one topic that stuck out to me was the subject of sustainability. At UNC, one of the focuses on sustainable businesses is the “Triple Bottom Line,” or people, planet, and profit. Businesses should run their operations with these three things in mind at all times. 

Upon seeing the Solimar opportunity come across my LinkedIn, I was immediately drawn to the idea of sustainable tourism. Using my tourism and world travel experience, I thought I could bring a unique perspective to the Solimar team. 

I was ready to dive right in and get started. The first project I worked on was a domestic project for the Inn and Tavern at Meander. It is a quaint, historical inn that has a real homey feel to it. I started by outlining the content plans for the year, and put together a PowerPoint on the topics that needed to be highlighted each month. I also focused on the target audience, and which demographics would respond to which strategy. This was a useful project for me, being a business major, and being able to see how a business breaks down their customers, and how they analyze potential patrons. It was useful to be on the planning side of things, and see how important it is to place an event at a certain time of the month, or during a certain season. It was important for me to see the value of having a detailed calendar and plan. Proposing those things to a committee for feedback can ensure the best possible results and a large reach to the target consumers. 

The Inn and Tavern at Meander

Moving forward into the next project team I worked with, I was “stationed” in Liberia, working on a project that has not come into fruition just yet. Liberia is an interesting subject matter, based on its past. Struggling through a civil war, only to be ravaged by the Ebola pandemic and then Coronavirus, this country may have one of the weakest infrastructures in the world. Utilizing Liberia’s coast could be very effective in establishing a DMO. There are surf destinations, and quaint beach villages, just booming with potential. The first steps, though, include research with the end goal of finding agencies to partner with. Through this process, I was able to learn how to discern which agencies have the largest audience. From there, the team can decide which specific ones to partner with. I found this information very valuable, as I am pursuing a degree in business. One of the most important takeaways I have from this summer is that marketing your product or service is an essential process. If you cannot effectively read an audience, no profit will be made, and in this case, no positive impact can be made in Liberia. 

The final project I assisted on was the Lewis and Clark National Historical Trail Experience. For this project, I was mainly choosing and compiling pictures for the user experience through Bandwango. As I stated in my presentation, this job is very important, because you must choose to represent the site in a positive light. It must draw customers in, as well as accurately depict the attraction. This points back to the theme of promotion and marketing. The site already exists, so the next step is gaining and retaining an audience. The best avenue to do this is through marketing and promotion on platforms like Bandwango. That way, patrons can see exactly which attractions they want to visit, and what each one has in store.

Pittsburgh, the starting point of the LCNHT

It was beneficial for me to see projects at each of their different stages. Meander was well established, but looking for improvements. Liberia was in the very early stages, and the  LCNHT was very close to being completed. Each project was different, but shared similar tasks in the marketing and promotion realm. It was important for me to see that marketing is how you actually make the destination a true attraction. It was also eye opening to see the amount of jobs that creating a resort, for example, could bring into a community. Creating a destination does not only bring in cash flow to a country or community, but it also helps the citizens establish themselves in the world with a job and a place to live. Once these jobs are created, there can be almost a “trickle up” effect where the infrastructure is built up through the people.  

I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Solimar, and learned a lot about running a sustainable business. Even in writing my blog about the Blue Economy, I was able to see the potential that sustainable tourism has to not only change a few countries here and there, but to change the entire world. Using the environment as a renewable resource, instead of taking the resources at an unhealthy rate is not only beneficial to the environment, but the community around the specific area. I truly do believe that Solimar as a company prides itself on thriving in the three areas of the Triple Bottom Line: People, Planet, and Profit.

Miles Rieker, Summer 2022 Solimar International Intern
Miles Rieker, Summer 2022 Solimar International Intern

 

Are you interested in joining our next internship cohort? Learn more here.

Solimar International is pleased to announce our Fall 2022 Travel Writing and Tourism Development Internship Cohort! This semester’s cohort is comprised of 14 inspired individuals with a common interest in sustainable development and tourism. As you will see, each intern has a unique background and experiences that will be highly beneficial to our work. We hope to equip these interns with the knowledge and skills they need to become industry leaders by providing them with hands-on experience in several of our current projects and actively participating in the vision and mission of Solimar International. Without further ado, this fall’s outstanding class of our tourism development internship!

Meet the Current Tourism Development Internship Cohort:

headshot of Ellison Fellers, Solimar international tourism development internship

Ellison Fellers

Ellison holds a BS in Sustainability in Business from Ohio State University and is currently enrolled at the University of Copenhagen, obtaining her MSc in Global Development. Ellison comes with experience working for a US-based NGO within the field of public health, leading volunteer trips to Argentina, Tanzania, Indonesia, India, and Kenya. Ellison currently works within the tourism sector on a development and innovation team striving to promote more sustainable and inclusive tourism experiences. As an avid traveler, her thirst for exploring every pocket of the planet continues to fuel her adventures abroad. She’s hoping to continue to combine her passions by exploring the intersection of tourism and development through regenerative and community-based applications. 

 

 

 

Lalith Chowdary Kankanala

I am a master’s student in Hospitality and Tourism Management from the Manipal Academy of Higher Education in India. I am currently enrolled at Sustainability Management School in Switzerland, pursuing a Dual CAS in Sustainable Hospitality and Tourism Management. I have experience organizing trips, particularly in the sustainable tourism sector, where I emphasize the importance of sustainability and help people understand why it is so important. I hope to gain more experience in gastronomy tourism and project management through this internship at Solimar International. 

 

Lassana Ndiaye

Lassana Ndiaye is a senior at the African Leadership University in Kigali, where she studies Global Challenges Studies with a focus on Wildlife Conservation and Environmental Related Studies. His passion for environmental and wildlife conservation began during the fall semester of 2019 when he had the opportunity to study abroad in Rwanda. During his internship with Maliasili, he learned how wildlife management affects indigenous communities. He worked as an intern in Climate resilience and Anticipatory Action Early Warming (AA) with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO). Lassana is fluent in English and French. Lassana hopes to pursue a career in climate resilience and write a policy for a government agency due to her international experience. When he is not reading about current events around the world related to disasters caused by global warming, he enjoys basketball, football, and morning running.

Grace Jaworski

Grace is a third-year student at The Ohio State University working towards her bachelor’s in Environment, Economy, Development, and Sustainability, specializing in Business and Sustainability and a minor in photography. After spending the spring collaborating with university leaders on projects focused on energy consumption, Grace decided to shift gears and pursue her passions for photography and sustainable travel more directly. This internship at Solimar International has already shown her how a love for photography can be connected with marketing sustainable travel, and Grace is excited to connect with others who have similar passions!

headshot of Eileen Dinn, Solimar international tourism development internship

Eileen Dinn

Eileen Dinn is currently a senior at the College of William & Mary in historic Williamsburg, VA where she studies Government and Integrative Conservation. She has a variety of work experience but, most notably, was recently co-leading the development of an administrative proposal regarding future strategic planning for James Monroe’s former property, Highland, located in Albemarle, VA. Through this project, Eileen could dive deeper into the concept of sustainable tourism and incorporate those principles into the proposal. She is enthusiastic about traveling and learning more about the world around her and always strives to find solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.  

 

 

headshot of Tom Hinkel, Solimar international tourism development internship

Tom Hinkel

Tom Hinkel holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and is currently a graduate student at American University’s School of International Service. He has professional experience in both sustainable development and conservation as well as in the government SaaS industry. His undergraduate professional experience gave him knowledge of various conservation efforts, such as protecting the Okavango Delta in Namibia. He is also an avid researcher with academic interests in Europe, Eurasia, and sub-Saharan Africa. With these interests, he has beneficial knowledge of the political context of numerous regions.

Tom studied abroad in Berlin and utilized this opportunity to travel throughout Europe. He was fascinated by the local Catalonian government’s actions toward establishing sustainable tourism practices in Park Güell. During his internship, Tom is excited at the opportunity to further his understanding of sustainable tourism development and how the sector interacts with national governments. 

headshot of Noelle Faiza, Solimar international tourism development internship

Noelle Faiza

As a child, Noelle’s annual trips to visit her family in Tunisia during US school breaks planted a seed that evolved into a passion for travel. Her dual nationality made her curious about the world’s diverse cultures and political systems. At 16, she moved to the city of Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina, where she lived for two years as a United World College (UWC) Davis Scholar. The UWC mission of making education a force to build bridges has become a lifelong philosophy for Noelle, which she applies to many areas of her life. In line with this ethos, she believes travel is one of the most engaging forms of education possible. This past summer, she was awarded the National Security Language Institute for Youth Scholarship to study Arabic in Amman, Jordan, for six weeks. Aside from academic travel experiences, Noelle has backpacked through Montenegro and Croatia, biked 250 kilometers through Bosnia and Herzegovina, and explored the Côte d’Azur via public transportation. Through every experience, she seeks to learn from the people who live in the places she visits to understand the location in a multi-faceted way.

 

 

Madison Tomaso

Madison Tomaso is currently taking a gap year and plans to study Political Science. She is from Pine Knoll Shores, North Carolina. She is passionate about preserving cultural heritage, traveling, and studying foreign languages. As an experienced traveler, she is interested in learning about sustainable tourism. Madison is thrilled to have the opportunity to intern with Solimar International to expand her knowledge. She is excited to bring her skills to Solimar to help benefit the communities along the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail.

Mavi Wilches

From an early age, Mavi was able to adapt to a nomadic lifestyle from the moment she left Colombia, where she was born, and as she moved from the United States to Brazil, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. She recalls this lifestyle was a life-changing experience, without a doubt, but it was only years later that she truly realized its long-lasting impact. The academic and personal experiences she has gained by transiting through these cultures has allowed her to develop soft skills based on empathy, respect, and appreciation for diversity. As a result, these lessons on multiculturalism, cross-cultural skills, and multilingualism have awakened in her interest in combining development goals with the sustainable tourism paradigm in an attempt to advance social inclusion, community empowerment, and gender equality. She believes this is precisely where Solimar’s Fall Virtual Internship Program fits in!

Mavi looks forward to learning from destination management planning as she assists in simultaneous projects taking place in Tunisia, the Congo, and Timor-Leste, among others. Her goal is to use this experience to decide the next steps, as she just graduated from Fundação Getulio Vargas in São Paulo, Brazil, and now holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration.

Kat Orellana

Kat holds a BS in Biology and Environmental Science from Duke University and is pursuing a Master’s of Environmental Science and Management (MESM) at the University of California Santa Barbara’s Bren School of the Environment. Kat has worked on conservation initiatives through National Geographic’s Big Cats Week and Saving Nature’s Corridor Reforestation Projects. Through her time spent living, working, and backpacking abroad, she witnessed the impacts travel can have on terrestrial and marine ecosystems, as well as its effects on the surrounding communities. Her experiences have instilled a love of travel and an urgency to protect our world’s wild places. Kat is motivated to increase benefits for both biodiversity and local communities through tourism and is excited to join Solimar International’s tourism development internship cohort to create a larger space for sustainability and responsible tourism within the travel industry.

headshot of Marissa Volkman, Solimar international tourism development internship

Marissa Volkman

Marissa’s interest in global affairs began in high school when she had the chance to meet with representatives of the United Nations to discuss unemployment in the European Union. She went on to study at Colgate University in order to take advantage of the school’s ample study-abroad opportunities. As an undergraduate, she majored in English and double minored in philosophy and writing/rhetoric, choosing courses highlighting international perspectives. Outside of the classroom, she edited her school newspaper and pursued extra-curricular opportunities in linguistics to fulfill her ardor for cultural exploration. After completing her B.A. in May 2021, Marissa earned a TEFL certification and began teaching English online. In February 2022, she traveled to Germany to intern at a non-profit, where she worked to highlight locals’ cross-national social histories while fostering community engagement. Her internship demonstrated how tourism could be used to reinvigorate a small town and shifted Marissa’s career goals back towards her passion for international affairs, now focusing on the tourism sector. As an avid backpacker whose zeal for preserving linguistic and cultural diversity directs her travels, Marissa is thrilled to be breaking into the sustainable tourism industry by joining Solimar’s tourism development internship. She is dedicated to using her time here to ensure tourism enriches both travelers and developing touristic communities around the world.

headshot of Cat Padgett, Solimar international tourism development internship

Catherine Padgett

Cat has just completed her master’s degree in Food Security from the University of Edinburgh. As part of this master’s, she completed a dissertation on the intersections of food security and mangrove conservation efforts in Bangladesh’s Sundarban Delta. Solimar was a project partner in this research, providing local connections and project supervision. Through this research opportunity, Cat could travel to Dacope, a sub-district of Bangladesh’s Khulna district, to conduct in-person fieldwork. Here, she worked with one of Solimar’s Bangladesh project partners: Bangladesh Environment and Development Society, a local NGO. This opportunity cemented her drive to pursue research as a career path, supporting projects that center on smallholder livelihood development, local perspectives, and community-based initiatives for the world’s most vulnerable populations.

headshot of Megan O'Beirne, Solimar international tourism development internship

Megan O’Beirne

Megan is passionate about sustainable development, regenerative travel, and environmental education. For the past five years, she has worked as a sustainability professional in the luxury hospitality industry, first in Laamu Atoll, Maldives, and then in Cartagena, Colombia. She has bachelor’s degrees in Environmental Studies and Global Studies from the University of California Santa Barbara. She is currently working on a dual master’s degree in International Affairs, Natural Resources, and Sustainable Development from American University in Washington, DC, and the United Nations University for Peace in Costa Rica. She will be working on Solimar’s Climate Adaptation Project in the Maldives, which aims to incentivize the private sector to invest in nature-based solutions. Megan is an avid bike commuter, scuba diver, nature photographer, and international cook/eater.

 

 

Anaïs Prado Cornaro

Anaïs grew up in Switzerland but coming from a multicultural background, as her parents had both grown up in various countries, she has a passion and curiosity to explore and get to know new cultures and ways of life. From a young age, she has been drawn to nature and its preservation. Hence she plans to study Environmental Engineering at ETH Zurich. While traveling, she has seen many of the wrong sides of tourism and is immensely interested in Solimar’s work incorporating the local communities. Grateful for being a part of the Tunisia project, she hopes to gain clarity on some of the central issues and how Solimar solves them.

 

Want to learn more about Solimar International’s tourism development internship? Read more and apply for our Spring 2023 internship program here.

Blog by: Lassana Ndiaye

virtual tourism internship cohort members working remotely in a coworking space

Solimar International is a sustainable tourism consulting and marketing firm that works in emerging destinations to stimulate economic growth and conserve natural resources and cultural heritage. Each spring, summer, and fall, we welcome a cohort of new interns to our team to embark on a 12-week learning program! Our interns join us from a variety of backgrounds: first year undergraduates, MBA students, parents, mid-career professionals, hotel operators, writers, marketers, etc.! We are continuously amazed by the passionate, internationally-minded individuals who join our team. Could that be you?

Here are eight reasons why you should join our virtual team and embark on a remote sustainable tourism internship with Solimar International: 

1. Gain real insight into the sustainable tourism world

Embarking on a remote internship with Solimar gives you a chance to gain insight into the world of sustainable tourism. If this is an industry that you are interested in pursuing a career in, this internship is a perfect place to get your foot in the door. During your internship, you will receive an in-depth understanding of how this industry works through weekly learning presentations and hands-on project work. Over the course of the 12-week internship, you will gain an understanding of the international development sector and how tourism can positively impact a country’s economy, while simultaneously conserving and protecting the environment and local culture. 

solimar intern takes photo on a rooftop

2. Work on Real Development Projects

Solimar International has projects in diverse countries all over the world. If you undertook an internship at Solimar, you would have the chance to learn about different countries’ cultures and history. Furthermore, interns can submit which projects they would be interested in working on. Your interests, career goals, and regional experience are carefully considered by Solimar, and assignments are allocated accordingly. Projects interns have worked on previously include: 

Suppose you are assigned to assisting the USAID Liberia project, for example. In that case, you would learn about the country’s creation as a settlement for the formerly enslaved sent from the United States or the country’s best-surfing destinations. After the conclusion of your internship, you will be well versed in the project you were assigned with Solimar. In addition, you will learn about every other project during the weekly meetings, taking you around the world from the comfort of your home. 

sustainable tourism learning opportunities in beautiful african plain

3. Work 100% remotely (the freedom of flexibility)!

There are no geographic limitations to work for Solimar – our interns have joined us from six different continents! Remote working will give you the freedom to create your own schedule! At Solimar, interns are expected to work 15-20 hours per week for 12 weeks. This flexibility means that many previous interns at Solimar have pursued other opportunities alongside their internship in sustainable tourism. For example, some interns attend college, write dissertations, work, travel, and volunteer simultaneously during their training. In fact, at Solimar, we encourage you to pursue interests that are conducive to your career path and overall life enjoyment. 

Additionally, Solimar gives interns flexibility during holidays and exam seasons, understanding the importance of a healthy work-life balance. Working with Solimar, you will have plenty of time to spend with your family and friends, and to work on assignments for university or college. Moreover, suppose you cannot attend a weekly meeting due to personal or professional obligations. In that case, you should not hesitate to contact a member of the Solimar team to inform them of your absence. Solimar understands that life is unpredictable, so as long as you contribute to the team and complete your tasks on time, you will make a great addition to Solimar. 

Intern from anywhere, even the beach
Work from anywhere, even the beach

4. Build tourism industry skills that allow you to stand out to employers 

Although this virtual internship is unpaid, completing an internship with Solimar gives you great opportunities to learn new skills and further enhance the talent you already possess. At Solimar, you are assigned to work with a team member who is a leading figure in the sustainable tourism industry. In addition, working closely with your team leader offers you the chance to receive weekly feedback on the work you produce for Solimar. Skills you could add to your CV after your internship include: 

  • Content Development
  • Copywriting and Editing
  • Social Media Curation
  • SEO Strategies
  • Press Release writing
  • Strategic outreach
  • Research 
  • Effective Communication
  • Critical Thinking 
  • Working with Asana, Slack, WordPress, Microsoft Word
  • Other skills depending on your assigned project: Interviewing, Photo Sourcing, Report Drafting

Solimar DMMS, learn from Solimar

5. Get your writing published

Working with Solimar gives you the exceptional opportunity to get your writing published. After you are assigned a development project to work on, you will research the unique culture and history of the country and develop blog and social media post ideas to work on throughout your internship. After that, you will curate blog posts at a pace you and your team leader agreed upon. Once the editing and feedback process has been completed, these blogs will be published on your project’s destination and tourism websites. Furthermore, you will see the impact of your publication through social media likes, shares, and analytics. 

Furthermore, you will be given the opportunity to write and edit blogs specifically for the Solimar International website. Solimar encourages you to choose the blog topic you are most interested in. Blog topics may include writing about the blue economy, ecotourism, sustainability, pescatourism, and so on. At Solimar, the team encourages you to focus on areas you could use to your advantage when pursuing future career opportunities.

Write about places you’ve never known about before!

6. Learn from one-on-one exposure to leading experts in the tourism industry

Furthermore, during the weekly group meetings, you will learn from one-on-one exposure to industry experts. For example, Matthew Humke, Director of Social Enterprise at Solimar, has twenty years of experience in the tourism industry and frequently gives presentations during weekly meetings. In addition, Chloe King, Director of Conservation and Community Development at Solimar, is a passionate marine conservationist and social scientist. King has worlds of expertise that she shares with the interns weekly. Many fantastic minds work at Solimar and are always excited to share their knowledge with interns. Click here to learn more about who you would work with during your internship with Solimar. 

The opportunity to work with these experts in sustainable tourism, content development, and marketing will make you stand out to future employers, as you will leave your internship equipped with the knowledge to undertake a variety of career paths. The wheel above demonstrates the many skills you will develop during your time with Solimar. If you are interested in a specific aspect of sustainable tourism or content development, the leaders at Solimar take your interests very seriously and will ensure you learn about an area that would be conducive to your future career. 

Tourism mentorship opportunities

At Solimar, we care about developing our interns’ skills for future career prospects. As such, The entire team at Solimar has created an incredibly encouraging work environment for you to thrive. For example, you will receive feedback on your work that highlights your strengths and offers opportunities to improve to the best of your ability. If you are unsure about any of the assigned tasks, do not hesitate to contact anyone on the Solimar team. Everyone is kind and would be happy to help you with any problems. 

7. Worldwide Networking

Solimar’s interns work virtually from all over the world. For example, in the summer 2022 cohort, the interns from Ireland, Poland, Italy, Georgia, Indonesia, Jordan, Turkey, and the United States. These interns came to Solimar with a unique perspective and skill set that they could share with their fellow interns. Often, interns will get the opportunity to work together on assignments. Working within a team is an invaluable way to network. In addition, the interns usually work full-time in the tourism industry after training with Solimar. Therefore, in the future, when you are looking for funding or project development opportunities, you could turn to the interns you worked alongside during your time with Solimar. 

Furthermore, when you inevitably travel to different countries in the future, you will most likely have someone to meet up with that worked at Solimar. Many career opportunities stem from casual conversations with people who work in the same industry you are interested in. Therefore, meeting other interns at Solimar will provide you with at least twenty new connections from around the world. 

spring 2022 virtual internship cohort

Spring 2022 Remote Intern Cohort working with Solimar International

Am I eligible for the Solimar’s tourism internship?

Solimar International hires interns based on a set level of qualifications, skills, interests, and qualities. Scan through the list below to see if you are eligible to work as a virtual intern with Solimar. The general requirements we search for include: 

  • A passion for sustainable tourism development
  • An interest in marketing and communications
  • Excellent proficiency in written and spoken English, including impeccable grammar and spelling
  • A highly driven individual who is thorough, enthusiastic, and willing to jump into any given task
  • Someone comfortable working remotely with digital tools
  • Great attention to detail
  • Someone with strong interpersonal, written, and verbal communication skills

If you possess these qualities and skills, the Solimar team would be thrilled to receive an application from you for our virtual tourism internship program. 

Apply now for our next tourism internship cohort!

Interested in pursuing a sustainable tourism internship with Solimar International? Click the link to submit your Internship Application Form.

Upon submission, we will get back to you with a decision within two weeks. Email [email protected] if you have any further questions about the virtual internship with Solimar International.    

Blog by Hannah McDonnell, Summer 2022 Solimar International intern

Spring 2022 Destination Development and Destination Marketing Internship

We recently kicked off our Spring 2022 Destination Development and Destination Marketing Internship cohort, working with 18 of the most talented budding tourism professionals from around the world. Our interns are from 12 different countries (such as China, Indonesia, Mexico, New Zealand, Italy, and more) and live, study, and work spread across the globe.

Spring 2022 Destination Development and Destination Marketing Internship

Each season, we are amazed at the vast talent and promise our interns share, and this semester was certainly no exception. We received a record-breaking number of applications for this cohort, and have selected the most qualified candidates. These ambitious professionals are joining some of our projects and helping with communications campaigns, DMO development, research, and content writing. They are working on our projects around the world from supporting Friends of Wallacea in Guyana, to Liberia, to Timor-Leste, New Hampshire, and beyond!

Without further ado, get to know the spring 2022 intern cohort and discover the amazing skills that make each one of them unique and talented.

Meet our Spring 2022 Destination Development and Destination Marketing Interns

Destination marketing internship

Eliot Heiss – has significant experience with journalism and communications, as he hosts his own podcast! He has studied in different countries, including Canada and Austria. His degrees are in Political Science, with a specialization in international relations and environmental politics.

Jess Moore – has extensive experience in the field of tourism, with over 19 years working in the field. Her background is in Leisure Studies, and she has dedicated a big part of her career to working on luxury tourism. She has recently discovered a passion for sustainable tourism and wants to use her career to generate an impact.

Hannah Lambert – is incredibly passionate about adventure tourism and sustainability. She is an avid traveler and she is currently traveling through Asia teaching English. Her studies are in Natural Resource Tourism with a minor in Business Administration. Hannah is excited to see her work have an impact on the world.

Kylie Blank – is a junior at Cornell University. She is Majoring in Hotel Administration and minoring in Sustainable Business and Economic Policy. Kylie was inspired to take this internship to gain knowledge in the area of sustainability. She hopes to apply this knowledge into the area of hotel management that she has been actively involved in for many years.

Thomas Kalchik – is an experienced young professional. Most recently, he has been involved in social responsibility in hotel chains and other types of non-profit work related to the tourism industry. He is extremely passionate about the power of tourism and wants to bring people together through travel.

Kim Sucré – looking out for the best study and research experience, Kim has adventured herself to study abroad in the UK and Italy. Her degree is in International Tourism Management, and her passions involve foreign cultures and languages. She is a member of her city’s Council for local tourism development, and she wants to continue to work in tourism development. She has already been applying her vast knowledge of tour planning and development to the Destination Marketing Internship!

Asfar Ahmad – is from Bangladesh but is currently based in Copenhagen, where he is completing his Master’s in Tourism. Asfar is looking forward to contributing with the projects and is hoping that his time with Solimar will boost his career.

Célia Hulin – has strong experience working with a DMC in Myanmar for over five years. She is ambitious and is completing her second Master’s in Hospitality, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation. Most recently, her interests have been focused on working directly with local communities.

Emma Barfus – has lived in multiple places across the United States, which enticed her interest to explore the world. She is currently finishing her degree in international studies. Emma believes that her time in Solimar will give her the tools to become a better professional in the future.

Adam Pudi Luddy – is an activist with a degree in Tourism Business. He is moved by issues such as inequality, human rights, climate change, gender, people empowerment, and poverty alleviation. Adam wishes to address these social issues through tourism and become a sustainable tourism specialist.

Alexandria Kleinschmidt – is passionate about earth science, and she graduated in Geological science from Boston College. She spent two years teaching English in Germany. During her time abroad, she was able to rekindle her passion for cultural and nature tourism, which led her to explore all continents on earth.

Antony Noyes – is very proud of his Japanese, Filipino, and Swedish heritage. Raised in San Francisco, he made sure to keep his family traditions alive by cooking traditional food and spending lots of time outdoors. Antony is very keen on sustainable tourism and is eager to help develop the World Heritage Journeys Silk Road project.

Janis Rehme – is a skilled and experienced young professional in the areas of customer service and event management. He is currently studying International Tourism Management in the Netherlands where he balances his studies with his passion for traveling, exploring nature and meeting new people.

Nina Wang – is based in Hong Kong, where she is pursuing a Master’s degree in Sustainable Tourism. She is passionate about exploring different cultures and being around nature. She hopes to contribute to sustainable tourism and envisions her internship at Solimar as a way of doing so.

Greta Dallan – has recently finished her Master’s in International Tourism Management at the University of Surrey. She is well traveled and eager to learn more about sustainable tourism and destination marketing and management. Her career goal is to improve the state of tourism in Italy, her home country.

Lisa Elmes-Bosshard – was born on the Caribbean island of St. Kitts. She has dedicated her life to the tourism industry, an industry in which she has occupied different positions throughout her career. She has traveled the world, from the Caribbean all the way through to Nepal. Now, Lisa dedicates her days to pursuing a Master’s in Sustainable Tourism studies at George Washington University. Her skills make her an ideal Destination Marketing Intern.

Jessica Pool – has great experience living abroad. She has lived in six countries in the last two years. She is currently pursuing an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master’s Degree in Latin American studies. Jessica strongly believes that tourism has the potential to improve life in communities if properly managed.

Caitlyn Marentette – is an undergraduate majoring in South Asia Studies. Her research interests center around the history of colonialism in modern India, Pakistan, linguistic diversity in South Asia, and the Gunpowder Empires. Caitlyn has been an editorial intern for an academic publishing journal for the last year and a half. After graduating, she hopes to continue her studies, pursuing a career in academic research on modern South Asia.

two Destination Development and Destination Marketing interns talking about strategy

Did you enjoy reading about our interns? You can read their full bios here. If you have similar interests in gaining real world tourism experience, visit our internship information page and join our next season of virtual interns!

“We rely confidently on Solimar's deep technical experience and professionalism as tourism consultants. You always are exceeding our expectations.”
Leila Calnan, Senior Manager, Tourism Services Cardno Emerging Markets

Contact us

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    Washington, DC 20010
  • Phone

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