Hi, my name is Caterina and I recently completed my Product Design Engineering Degree at Strathclyde University in Glasgow. Graduating in such uncertain times made me realise that time is precious and you should be spending it doing it what you love and learning new things! That’s what led me into spending the past three months doing my internship at Spotted by Locals.
I am originally from Sicily, Italy and I moved to Glasgow after school (2014). At that time I didn’t know what to do with myself, what I wanted to study or even if I wanted to continue my studies at university. Eventually, I found my path and which led me to Scotland and to one of the most fun university course! Like many other graduates in 2020, I was kind of stuck in a forced gap year which given the current circumstances had nothing to do with travelling or backpacking.
During my time at uni, I always kept myself busy with two part-time jobs on top of my coursework and building projects. All this free time after graduation made me realise I wanted to do something meaningful with my time improving my skills and learning new ones. I finally came across Spotted by Locals and the opportunity of becoming a Spotter in my city, Glasgow. I fell in love with the philosophy and values of Spotted by Locals so I decided to apply for both the Spotter and intern position. I always loved writing and travelling and this position ticked all the boxes for The Perfect Internship.
You may be thinking what does Product Design or even Engineering has to do with Spotted by Locals? Let me explain that to you: creativity and thinking outside the box are the fundamentals for Product Design and Spotted by Locals. During my internship, in fact, I was able to put into practice many skills learned during my time at uni. Bart (co-founder) always encouraged me to combine some of my creative skills and interests with any task I had to complete during my internship. My time was spent on some creative campaigns (like this animation and a secret campaign that hasn’t been launched yet!) as well as finding and writing content for the main blog.
All of this sounds amazing however, it wasn’t all roses and rainbows! I had to learn how to manage my time wisely working independently. I loved the fact that you can do work pretty much anytime and anywhere however, some planning and structure are key in order to meet deadlines. One of the most challenging tasks was to learn how to select and create new content for both the blog and social media accounts. Bart encouraged me to write about topics I liked, however not everything is suitable to Spotted by Locals. I also enjoyed having to adapt some travelling topics with the current situation full of travel restrictions. This was challenging however, I was able to create some inspirational content for anyone looking for ideas on things to do to rediscover their own cities. One of my favourite articles I worked on is the Four Wheels Friendly Activities, I love road trips and here I share some creative activities to do anywhere based on some amazing spots Spotted by Locals!
I really enjoyed working as part of this team as I was able to learn by doing and by making mistakes. This experience has taught me a lot and even if I still don’t know what I will be doing in the nearest future, I now find myself with more practical experience. I am grateful for the time spent at Spotted by Locals as I got to know such an amazing community of people which I can’t wait to meet during one of the famous Spotters Weekend when we’ll all be able to travel again.
I recommend this internship to anyone who loves writing and travelling but also widening their horizons by taking up new challenges and learn new things. I hope my contribution will be inspirational to like-minded explorers and make a positive impact to support local and inspire others to travel. If you have any questions or need motivation about the internship, feel free to hit me up with any questions. And for more Scottish travel inspiration check my Glasgow articles!
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