It’s amazing the difference eight months can make.

Ben Roberts-Thomson is now on the homeward stretch with just four months remaining of his year-long HTMi media trainee internship. Moving to the other side of the world for his first-ever job in the creative industries has been a huge learning curve – but the experiences he has had, and the skills he has gained, have been life-changing. This month Ben has nailed Photography Lights, designed new logos, headed deep into the mountains and experienced his first pangs of homesickness. It’s been a busy few weeks!

“Designing new logos for HTMi’s Barista Academy has been at the top of my to-do list. It’s really fun coming up with concepts for the design elements. Playing around and watching something grow from a vague idea to a finalised logo design is awesome.  On the flip side, it’s proved quite challenging to come up with a logo that ties in with previous styles, and also gains approval from the wide range of staff members! It’s a really busy time of year at HTMi – there’s a group of students who are heading to Rio to volunteer for the Olympic Games, and several VIP visits that I’ve been assisting with. HTMi also renewed its partnership with Ulster University a few weeks back so I did a lot of photography for that. Learning to master Photography Lights and such was quite tricky!

“I’ve been here eight months now and my skills have improved enormously. I’m much more efficient in my editing style – and have been told by all my co-workers that I’m much more relaxed than when I first arrived!  I’ve also managed to see some amazing things outside of the workplace. Lately I’ve been spending a lot of time up in the mountains and I’m heading to the Netherlands for Easter. With just a few more months of the internship to go, I’m starting to turn my thoughts towards New Zealand – I’m actually really looking forward to coming home.  I’ve got a tonne of ideas and am keen to get together with some of my old ACG Yoobee mates and work on some short film projects. I also reckon the concept of ‘Hospitality Media’ would be an interesting road to follow.

“Mine was the first internship HTMi had ever offered to an ACG Yoobee graduate, so I think I’ve been a bit of a guinea pig! But it has gone really well and I know they’re keen to do another one, kicking off this July. I can thoroughly recommend it – it’s a brilliant way to see some of Europe, learn a new language, further develop your design skills and kick start your career. It’s actually been a life-changer for me.

 “My words of advice for anyone considering applying?  Be confident and show you have a wide range of skills. Don’t be afraid to step out into the unknown – you’ll never look back!”