Interning In The Startup Nation
After I finished volunteering at an Israeli children’s home, it was clear that I wanted to return to this wonderful country. However, I needed to complete my bachelor’s degree in Germany before I could come back to Israel.
I chose to major in business administration and environmental studies at a unique German environmental university. As my fifth semester, which was designated as a practical semester, drew near I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to return to Israel. Not just because I fell in love with the country but also because Israel is known as the startup nation. It has the highest concentration of innovative start-ups as well as high-tech companies in the world. I knew that if I wanted to work at an innovative startup, Israel was the place to go.
I had always been interested in the water industry, so when I started to search for Israeli startups active in the water industry, I came across Ayyeka Technologies Ltd. After a challenging application process, I began a five-month internship with Ayyeka’s Business Development team, which turned out to be an incredible opportunity.
A different kind of internship
I wanted to intern at Ayyeka for a few reasons. The most important one being that I didn’t want to be the kind of intern who does the tedious administrative work like printing, photocopying, and conducting internet research, which often happens in large companies. I was excited to be part of a young and professional team that was passionate about creating and developing unprecedented technologies to advance the water industry. In the beginning, it wasn’t easy. I had to read a lot about the water industry in order understand the business model and technology. Once I had enough background information, they presented me with my main project assignment. It seemed like a huge responsibility, and I was worried I would never be able to successfully complete it.
Once I started to work on the project and met with my supervisor, I gained more self-confidence and really enjoyed my work. In addition to the projects I worked on, Ayyeka gave me numerous opportunities to learn about various aspects of the business. For example, I met with the engineering team to learn how the device worked, and I got to see how it was installed and operated in the field. I even went with the Business Development team to pitch to investors! For me, the most memorable event was the Water Technologies and Environmental Control (WATEC)Exhibition, which took place in Tel Aviv and had over 10,000 visitors. I joined the Ayyeka booth and had a chance to represent the company!
Looking back on my internship, I am glad that I had the opportunity to intern at a company like Ayyeka. The team and the startup atmosphere was incredible. Although I am a student, and I don’t have a lot of professional experience, I can definitely say that Ayyeka, and its team, are very special. Although my internship lasted from Sep 2015 until Jan 2016, I am still in touch with the Ayyeka team and hope to return to Israel again.
So if you are thinking about interning at Ayyeka or another Israeli startup, my advice would be to go for it! If you like to be challenged and can work independently, you will get to learn about cutting edge technologies and you will have a lot of fun!