21-year-old Simba Deu is studying a BASc in Arts and Sciences at UCL and was a Google intern in 2018. She spent one month interning with an Australian fintech start-up based in Bali as part of Start Me Up’s Startup Internship Program. 

I joined the internship program because I want to really get a taste of what else was out there beyond the corporate world. As someone who identifies as a ‘multipotentialite’ [a person who has many different interests and creative interests and pursuits], I wanted to explore other options. 

And when you’re at university in the UK, you can’t help but feel pushed in the direction of corporate. And that’s not a bad thing if you want that. But I think people our age also want to know what else is out there.

In terms of work, I’ve done UX/UI, I’ve put together videos, but I’ve also had a really hands on approach to the business development. So it’s been really great to understand how to get a startup off the ground.

career directionIt’s not just an internship, it’s so much more. Not only are you adapting to a new place and meeting people from all over, but you’re also able to go up a mountain and be in nature at weekends, which is so rare.  

The mentors gave us a lot of freedom. If you want to get involved with something, they will support you. They are less like bosses and more like friends. And it’s quite rare to have a boss that is so invested in you.

I’ve traveled around Asia but there’s this buzz here that I haven’t experienced anywhere else. Here you’re literally meeting people from across the globe. Some people have made millions. Some have lost millions and some are still working on making their millions. Others have left the corporate world and are starting something new.

After this I’ve got two more internships and then I’m off to Shanghai to study for six months but I might find myself back in Bali.

I would 100% recommend the internship. My experience has changed my plans a bit. It’s more of a mental shift. Just knowing that this hub is out there is very reassuring when everyone at home is applying for the same type of job. Now I feel way more relaxed going back to London.   

Learn more about Simba’s time with Start Me Up here: 

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