Student Blog: Notes from Brussels (Internship)
Week 3 of Internship in Brussels, Belgium
by Shahin Soltan '09
This week was a fairly calm week in Brussels. My friend Arvin left on Tuesday which wasn't very much fun, but what made things better was that my mom came to see me the same day.
I felt bad for my mother because she took the bus all the way from Sweden. She left Sweden on Monday and didn't get here until Tuesday. It was more than a 24-hour bus ride. She chose to take the bus because of the high airline tickets nowadays. I was very happy to see my mom because I hadn't seen her in six months. I didn't only miss my mother but I also missed her cooking. Everyday when I came back from work she had dinner ready and that made me feel like I was back in high school again. Being able to see my mom was part of the reason I wanted to do my internship in Europe instead of the U.S.A. If I would have worked for Food Lion in Salisbury it would have been a little bit difficult to catch a bus to come see me and she would ended up spending a lot more money.
Work was interesting this week because I became more engaged in my project. I achieved great success comparing the manual booking system to the automatic. Although some accounts had large differences in balances, some accounts and amounts matched perfectly which made the work much more gratifying. Although we were successful in matching several accounts, many more accounts still need to match before we can implement the new system. The plan is for the automated system to be partially used in August, time will tell whether we can reach that goal or not.
The most exciting thing I did during the week was to go for a run in one of the very nice parks that they have here. The park is very conveniently located by the metro stop named "Parc." After getting off at "Parc," all you do is walk up the stairs and you are right in the middle of the park. There are usually lots of people there exercising or just relaxing after a day's work. I put on my tennis shoes and jogging pants and started running laps around the park. The view is very beautiful; they have nice statues and a water fountain in addition to the surrounding streets which all make it look even nicer. I jogged three laps around the park and I started getting really tired. I noticed that I had lost some of my condition strength since I arrived here. My plan is to get back in the same shape I was before I came to Brussels. Taking the subway to the park took longer time than I was actually running. The reason for that was that the trains don't run as often in the evenings, something I hadn't thought of.
On Saturday, my mother and I went to this place called Osseghem in Brussels. Delhaize has offices located there, but we just went there to look around a bit. Osseghem reminded my mom a bit of Gothenburg, Sweden because it is very multi-cultural with people from all different ethnic backgrounds. We were going to do some more exploring, but the weather wasn't cooperating so we went back to the hotel and instead watched Sweden lose 2-1 against Spain in the European Soccer Championships.
I am excited to enter another work week and see what it has to offer. I know that I will be working more on the two different accounting systems. How successful I will be remains to be seen.
PHOTOS: Business Internship in Brussels, Belgium