Marcel Roos - Founder & Global Account Director
Marcel Roos is the Connector and Co-founder of New Zealand Internships, New Zealand’s largest and longest running internship provider. He is responsible for liaising with business contacts, strategic planning, marketing, and sales. He attends many industry events in both a speaking and observing capacity, and is a member of the European Business Council, co-founder of the North Shore Professionals, President of the NLNZBA, and sits on the board of advisory for the Auckland Young Professionals organisation.
What was the impetus for starting New Zealand Internships in 2007? What was the biggest challenge you faced?
At that time there was no company in New Zealand focused on providing educational internships to local and international students. I spotted the opening, knowing New Zealand would be a fantastic place for foreign students to travel to and had huge room for growth in this regard. The biggest challenge was (and sometimes still is) to educate and convince companies why taking on an intern is such a good idea. It is important that we both share knowledge and provide opportunities to junior graduates and students who are still studying.
What does your role as Global Account Director look like on a day-to-day basis?
Awesome! I start the day with a lot of emails followed by two or three meetings a day. Most of the meetings are in person or via Skype. I am in contact with companies and work on forming new relationships with universities and agencies. There is always a lot of laughter coming from my office. When the clock hits 5pm, I usually have three events a week where I network and lay new contacts.
From your own experience, what types of interns do your placements typically attract?
We offer a wide variety of placements. I think it is not what we have to offer interns, but what New Zealand has to offer. We have contacts in all leading industries and can help almost everyone.
In what sectors does New Zealand Internships place interns?
We place interns in every sector. While some sectors are naturally more difficult, we will still usually be able to place a couple of interns in these fields. We screen each applicant when they sign up with us and tell them what the possibilities are for them.
What kind of post-internship career counseling do you offer alumni?
About 25 percent of all interns receive a job offer, and we support the interns to stay and provide flexibility to the students and employers to make this happen.
What is the best advice you can give students who are interested in applying to an New Zealand Internships program?
Sign up now! Besides that, if you’re not certain, have a browse through the website or Skype with one of our staff and I am sure that will be enough to convince you to sign up with New Zealand Internships.
Your background is in trade and economics. How does this knowledge apply to your work with internships?
A lot, my business mind makes me successful in making contact with new companies, matching interns with these companies, and convincing the companies of what benefits these interns have to offer.
You’re a member of a few different business councils and associations, how does your involvement in these groups benefit New Zealand Internships?
These lead to a small source of contacts, but provide big flexibility to possible unique areas where interns might be interested in.
What has been your biggest accomplishment since founding the organization almost eight years ago?
The biggest accomplishment is to be part of the European Business Council, for which we are currently trying to get a Free Trade Agreement between Europe and New Zealand. In this council we deal with mainly the highest governmental people and CEO’s of the largest firms.
What is the most fulfilling part of your job?
Making people happy during their stay and receiving a “thank you” from an intern who has successfully finished their internship and is about to leave New Zealand. These are the best moments of my work that truly make it worthwhile.