Not many cities have been made UNESCO World Heritage Sites in their entireties. Then again not many cities are as historically significant and architecturally wondrous as Venice, Italy. Once upon a time the dominating commercial port of the Western world, Venice has since become a magnet for tourism, trade, and fine artisanship. Completing internships in Venice will allow individuals to live in one of the most magnificently unique and romantically beautiful cities on the face of the earth. The biggest challenge of interning in Venice may be bringing yourself to leave.
Internships in Venice
Internships in Venice can take on a variety of forms. Though the city has ancient roots in commercial supremacy, today the primary industry is tourism, as nearly 3 million visitors descend upon Venice every year. If you are interested in the tourism or hospitality industries, then Venice offers a premier destination to gain international work experience. Business and marketing internships are also available, though not as common for interning in Venice.
Venice is also a great place to intern abroad in the arts, it boasts a reputable fashion industry and is also very influential in the fields of music and fine craftsmanship. The romantic backdrop of Venice cannot help but inspire young artists to seek fulfillment in any one of these fields. There are many museums and historical venues which offer a great supplement to internship work in Venice. Internships in Venice in all fields often combine intern work with some form of Italian language study.
Internships in Venice are most common in the summer months, as Venice has an increasing tendency to severely flood throughout the rainier winter season. Locals are accustomed to the acqua alta, where many of the city streets become covered in high water levels, but this can sometimes make life difficult for foreigners living in Venice for the first time. Internships typically last anywhere from a few weeks to multiple months, depending on your placement provider.
Life in Venice
Built on the Venetian lagoon, Venice is actually a series of 118 small islands intricately connected by a system of bridges and canals. It is quite literally a floating city, located on the northern coastline of the Adriatic sea. One of the most distinctive features of Venice is the fact that no cars are allowed on the streets of the city, meaning that locals get around purely by foot or by water transport. Though Venice is famous for gondolas, these have mostly become a tourist attraction and water taxis are a much more popular form of public transport.
Venice is not only world-renowned for its physical beauty, but also for the fine artisanship of its thriving local culture. Though it is most famous for its ornate glass work and mask making, the city has also been deeply influential in the development of music and the arts throughout Italy’s history. Living and interning in Venice will present interns with no shortage of artistic wonders and culturally immersive opportunities, to enrich their time interning abroad. The many festivals (most notably the Carnival of Venice) also contribute to a lively local environment which governs the streets year round.
Salary & Costs
The daily cost of living can be a bit steep in Venice, as it is one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in the world, but it is no more expensive than other similar cities throughout Europe. Interns abroad in Venice will learn to stay away from the most popular tourist places and do most of their eating and shopping in the backstreets with locals. That’s where the more authentic Venetian (affordable) experiences lie anyway.
Most internships in Venice will not be paid, but many offer compensation in the form of room and board. Some offer a reasonable stipend to interns as well, depending on the field of placement, and there are also few paid internship opportunities available.
Accommodation & Visas
Individuals who intern abroad in Venice may be offered the opportunity to live in a homestay or in apartment-style living. Homestays are a great way to engage closely with the local culture by living with a Venetian family. At the same time, it is hard to complain about living in your own apartment while interning in Venice. Do some research on the available options and decide which living situation will be most comfortable for you. Intern abroad programs in Venice will often help interns secure housing in any form.
If you are not a European national, then you will need to obtain a visa if you are planning to intern in Venice for more than 90 days. This is a fairly simple process to undergo and will often be guided by your intern abroad program or prospective employer.
Benefits & Challenges
“Unique” hardly does justice to the city of Venice. It is truly a one-of-a-kind place, equal parts floating historical phenomenon and thriving modern city. Whatever your field of interest, Venice has an aura of magnificence which will inspire the interns to reach for the greatest heights of achievement during their internship abroad. Beginning your international career in the birthplace of Marco Polo, Claudio Monteverdi, and Antonio Vivaldi, will provide the defining experience of a lifetime and give you the chance to enjoy the lively and hospitable culture which makes Italy so great.