Kaitlin Rossman May 2019 - August 2019Having worked as a vendor for Urban Connections in the past, I came into this internship looking to gain experience in an office work environment and to continue to develop my translation skills. On my first day I was given a large transcription project to work on for a Japanese think tank, JIIA. The project was fairly large with a short deadline, which made the project even more exciting. I also worked on a variety of different proofreading and editing projects for high profile clients such as the Ministry of Defense. This allowed me to not only deepen my understanding of the English language but also gain a newfound sense of confidence in my writing skills. Even though I was a part of the Editorial team, I was able to participate in weekly meetings with one of the sales teams which allowed me to gain a better understanding of the inner workings of the company. It also gave me an opportunity to practice my Japanese language skills in a business environment and to get to know my fellow colleagues.
Another one of my goals as an intern at Urban Connections was to be able to communicate directly with editors and coordinators. Initially I was nervous about meeting everyone. However, the office community was very welcoming and I never had problems asking for help. Everyone was generous with their time, taking moments out of their day to answer my questions and to help me out. Being able to gain the face to face interaction that is typically excluded in a vendor relationship was one of the highlights of my time at Urban Connections. I was definitely able to grow as an editor and translator because of these meaningful exchanges.
One of my favorite projects I got to work on during my internship at Urban Connections was translating for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Not only was the work challenging, but it helped me to better my Japanese language skills and comprehension. Moreover, being able to physically see the various press releases I had translated on the MOFA website was so inspiring as I could see my contribution.
I will be forever grateful of this internship opportunity and to the Urban Connections staff for providing me with an environment to learn and grow. If it wasn’t for the trust that everyone had in my ability to handle jobs, the friendly office space, and the knowledgeable workers at this company I would never have been able to gain so much out of this experience.
Sean Nakano June 2018 - August 2018As an undergraduate still studying at a university in the US, I decided to apply for this internship with the hopes of gaining some professional experience and new responsibilities that would build foundations for a professional career once I graduated. Though I had my uncertainties whether I would be prepared for such a job given my limited Japanese language skills and work experience, I was excited about the opportunity.
On my first day, after meeting my co-workers and receiving brief training from my manager in the Editorial Division, I was relieved at how helpful and friendly they were. They did a great job getting me up to speed and I felt fully prepared and eager to work alongside such a pleasant group of people.
Within my first few weeks, I was surprised at the level of responsibility I was given despite being a new intern. Though my time working here was relatively short, I ended up being involved in a variety of challenging, but also fascinating projects from a diverse set of high-profile clients. Among these, I worked on proofreads of several large publications from the Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, conference transcriptions for Toyota and Nissan, editing and proofreading work for a number of reputable Japanese companies, and even got to attend a week-long inspection of a pharmaceutical production factory in Shiga Prefecture to create a real-time transcript of the proceedings.
Through these projects, I learned a lot about the international affairs of Japan and emerging trends in business, but more importantly, the ability to work independently and manage time efficiently in a demanding environment. The high standards and hard work ethic of Urban Connections were truly inspiring, giving me a newfound sense of pride in the work I do. Reflecting on my time working as an intern, I feel incredibly fortunate to have had such a unique and rewarding experience.
Aurelia Figueras April 2017 - October 2017Après la complétion de mon master en études asiatiques, je me suis mise à la recherche d'une première expérience professionnelle me permettant de mettre à profit mes compétences linguistiques en japonais et mes connaissances sur la coopération et les relations internationales en Asie du Nord-Est. Urban Connections et ses nombreuses collaborations avec différents ministères, gouvernements locaux et ambassades ont alors tout de suite attiré mon attention.
Mes sept mois de stage au sein de la division éditoriale ont été bien au-delà des mes espérances. J'ai eu l'opportunité de participer pleinement aux différentes missions de mon équipe comprenant un grand nombre de traductions du japonais vers l’anglais. J’ai notamment travaillé de manière quotidienne pour le Ministère des Affaires étrangères et Nestlé Japon. J'ai également eu le privilège de produire des résumés et des transcriptions pour des conférences internationales de haut niveau telles que le Science and Technology in Society forum et la conférence Chief Justices of Asia & the Pacific.
Bien sûr, les nombreuses deadlines et l'exigence astreintes à ces tâches comportent leur lot de stress. Cependant, mon manager a toujours pris le soin et le temps de me former à chacune de ces missions, ainsi que de me donner de précieux retours sur chacun de mes travaux. Le professionnalisme et les compétences de mes collègues ont également été une véritable inspiration tout au long de mon stage.
Être à même de travailler avec rapidité et précision sur une grande variété de sujets tout assurant un niveau d’excellence, gérer et hiérarchiser des délais multiples sont des compétences que j’ai pu développer chez Urban Connections. Je ne peux que recommander chaleureusement ce stage pour tous jeunes professionnels ayant le désir de s’investir et de dépasser ses limites.
Marie O’Keefe June 2015 - August 2015I came to Urban Connections wanting to fully engross myself in an environment that I had never authentically experienced before. I had just finished my second year of undergraduate studies in the United States and I saw my long summer break as an excellent opportunity for me to experience the real world. Of course, just like anyone else plunging into a new experience, I was nervous for what lay ahead of me.
Fortunately, all of my worries faded away on the first day. I was immediately greeted and welcomed with warm smiles as I was shown to my desk in the Sales Division. I quickly developed great relationships with members of my team and truly enjoyed working side-by-side with them for two months. The intern coordinator who supervised me in my tasks also created a comfortable environment for me, for he was easy to approach, engaging, and very knowledgeable.
I was delighted as well to be exposed to many topics that I am currently studying at school. During my time at Urban Connections, I transcribed several audio files from the Nobel Prize Dialogue in Tokyo as well as audio files from interviews with representatives from international human rights organizations. While I was transcribing these files, I was fully engaged in what the speakers were saying or presenting. Not only was I impressed with the topics, but also with how exceptional some of their public speaking was. I was also given the responsibility of creating English lessons for a Japanese construction consultant group in which employees travel to different countries such as Uganda, Sri Lanka, and the Philippines in order to improve some of the country’s engineering projects. I would tailor the lessons specifically for each person according to their job and country, which was very educational for me while I researched articles and videos for each lesson.
Something I believe should be written on the Urban Connections website, is how interesting and amazing the people who work here are. Everyone has and is a compelling story. They’re very curious about the world and challenged me in some of my ways of thinking. Having a good relationship with my coworkers also showed me that I had earned their respect and trust. During my time at Urban Connections, I am happy to say that I gained knowledge and life skills from the work and tasks I carried out, but developing a good relationship with even one of my colleagues is proof for me that I succeeded beyond my specified job description as an intern.
Jack Yang June 2014 - July 2014如果要說我目前人生中最充實的暑假在哪裡過的？那我的答案就是在Urban Connections實習的這兩個月。有別於一般的實習生活，CEO，Larry Greenberg在第一天就告訴我，他們不會只叫實習生幫忙碎紙，倒垃圾，相反地，在這兩個月的實習生活，實習生會被當作是正職人員一樣真的去處理「Real Work」。這讓沒有工作經驗的我膽戰心驚，我當時十分懼怕我自己沒有能力勝任這個工作，但是我非常感謝公司內的前輩們，當我有問題時，我就會向他們提問，他們都會非常熱心地為我解答，在完全瞭解工作內容後，以前那些緊張感也都煙消雲散了，剩下的是十足的動力，努力，把以前訓練的成果發揮出來，以及不斷的去檢查自己的任務。因為Urban Connections是一家商譽極佳的公司，所以我常常可以在工作中聽到各個領域佼佼者的演講錄音檔，在聽打的過程中，我學習到了Gucci產品的品牌哲學，紀錄Twitter老闆的創業路程，見證了創投產業的興起，以及洞悉科技產業的趨勢。
最後，我非常感謝Urban Connections給了我一個精彩的2014，也讓我對我的未來有了更多更多的想法，雖然我現在是就讀醫學系，但是我相信在未來，我一定會把我的所學和在Urban Connections學到的做整合，並且改變這個世界。
Alex Meyer October 2010 - June 2011I joined Urban Connections hoping to take on real responsibilities and not just be in charge of typical intern activities. Sure enough I was thrown into the deep end right away, helping out with a live summary within a few weeks of starting. I was nervous of course, but my manager made sure I was well prepared and trained for the task. I had plenty of opportunities to engage in a wide range of challenging and rewarding work and acquire the necessary skills to accomplish them, and one of the important lessons I learnt from my time at Urban Connections is that with practice and guidance it is possible to learn to perform any task, even if it seems daunting at first.
The other members of the Editorial Division were always ready to provide assistance or advice, and I never ceased to be amazed by the wealth of knowledge they possessed on a variety of subjects. In general, the can-do attitude of all my colleagues made work very smooth and enjoyable.
It’s impossible to talk about the nine months I spent at Urban Connections without mentioning the Great East Japan Earthquake. I would say that probably the most rewarding work I was able to take part in was helping government ministries and agencies share accurate and transparent information with the international community, through the translation of Japanese press releases and press conferences, and transcribing press conferences for foreign press in Japan.
All in all, I was entrusted with almost the same level of responsibility as a regular employee and was able to work on a great number of very interesting projects, and this proved to be a truly valuable experience for me, helping me acquire all sorts of new skills, while also providing ample opportunity for personal growth.
Adam Century June 2010 - August 2010I came to Japan for my summer internship at Urban Connections carrying my fair share of insecurities. Not only was I journeying to a country that I'd never stepped foot in, but my Japanese was far from fluent and I lacked any genuine office work experience. From the moment I arrived at Urban Connections' conveniently located Shibuya office, however, my uncertainties quickly faded and I became engrossed in the interesting, challenging, and team-driven work that presented itself before me.
I can still vividly recall how on my first morning at the office, the Editorial Division – which I was to become a part of – congressed in the conference room so that I could have a chance to be introduced to everyone. I was surprised by the attention that I was granted and in turn felt the desire to integrate myself into the Editorial Division and make valuable contributions to the advancement of the company. From the very beginning, the Editorial Division, as well as the company as a whole, took me seriously and treated me as a regular employee. In turn, I was expected to act and perform as a regular employee. On my first afternoon, I was asked to summarize an hour-long lecture on the country-specific obstacles that prevent Japanese women from reintegrating themselves into the workforce after they become mothers. The work never ceased to be both challenging and educational.
During my time at Urban Connections, I was actively engaged in a wide range of different projects, from transcribing episodes of '30 Rock' for translation, to proofreading sections of the Ministry of Defense's gargantuan yearly defense white paper. Work was oftentimes time-sensitive, and I was expected to perform at a high level. Such expectations at times were accompanied by a degree of pressure, perhaps an element lacking from most college internships. But the cohesiveness and helpfulness of the Editorial team, as well as the knowledge that I could always ask colleagues for direction or assistance, ensured that such pressures never became overbearing.
During my internship at Urban Connections, the bar was set high and I was expected to meet my manager's realistic but challenging expectations. Reflecting on the experience, however, I am extremely grateful for the responsibility, respect and trust that I was granted. I hope you have the opportunity to share this sense of accomplishment as an Urban Connections intern!
Christina April 2009 - December 2009Ich hatte gerade einen 6-monatigen Japanisch-Intensivkurs in Tokyo abgeschlossen, als ich zum Vorstellungsgespräch für ein Praktikum bei Urban Connections eingeladen wurde.
Während meines zweimonatigen Praktikums war ich im Rahmen einer Marketingkampagne für die DVD-Kollektion der Tochterfirma Digital Meme für den gesamten europäischen Raum, insbesondere für deutsch- und französischsprachige Länder, zuständig. Meine Aufgaben reichten vom Übersetzen der Marketingmaterialien bis hin zum Recherchieren und Anschreiben von potentiellen Interessenten. Dabei arbeitete ich täglich direkt mit dem Geschäftsführer von Urban Connections und Digital Meme, Herrn Larry Greenberg, zusammen, was mir wertvolle Einblicke in die Welt des Marketing und die Kommunikationsbranche verschaffte und mich diese verantwortungsvolle Aufgabe sehr gut bewältigen ließ.
Nach dem Praktikum wurde mir eine Festanstellung als Junior Account Executive im Marketing & Sales Team angeboten. Von da an habe ich nicht nur die verschiedensten Projekte in den Bereichen Filmuntertitelung, Übersetzung und Design & Layout für internationale Kunden aus dem englisch- und deutschsprachigen Raum und Botschaften in Tokyo akquiriert und koordiniert, sondern war auch als Übersetzerin und Texterin tätig.
Von Tag 1 an wurde mir bei Urban Connections Verantwortung übertragen. Das mir damit entgegengebrachte Vertrauen weiß ich sehr zu schätzen. Auch möchte ich die Erfahrung in einem internationalen Team in Japan gearbeitet zu haben, auf keinen Fall missen.
Lisa Kawamoto May 2007 - July 2007Prior to my internship with Urban Connections, I had had no work experience, and I had never lived in Japan. Despite this, I was able to spend two valuable months that changed the way I thought about translation, language, Japan and its international relations, politics, and economics.
I spent my first month in the Total Documentation Group-completing projects that required transcription, editing, and proofreading-and my second month in the 2nd Sales Division-exclusively completing Japanese-to-English translation projects. It was always exciting and invigorating to realize that I was lending my abilities to and learning from this powerhouse of a company with prominent clients. I translated daily summaries of news articles for Nissan, announcements for Digital Meme, and profiles of Cabinet members. In addition, my major translation projects were press conferences held twice a week by the Foreign Minister and portions of the 2007 White Paper on Small and Medium Enterprises in Japan for the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
At first, I was scared that I would be unable to complete what was asked of me, but before I knew it, I was learning how to balance the demands of understanding and conveying subtleties, producing the best work possible, and working efficiently. I feel that the difficulties inherent to translation-such as capturing nuances in meaning and neither adding nor removing content-were a good metaphor for helping me understand the subtleties of the corporate environment. I learned to keep both the big picture and the small details in sight, something that will serve me well in academics and beyond.
I appreciate the opportunities and responsibilities given to me as an intern at Urban Connections. Because of my internship, the "future" and the "corporate world," which had been vague concepts to me in the past, became more real and something to embrace and a newfound confidence gave me hope in my abilities.
Lee Joo-Un September 2006 - April 2007With hardly any experience in the professional world, I arrived at Urban Connections perhaps a little naive and wide-eyed. My nine month internship with the company has definitely been a steep learning curve, which has left me with a new perspective on the working world. Although challenging at times, Urban Connections provided me with incredible opportunities. Within two or three weeks of my internship I was sent to Hiroshima and Kyoto to report on the activities of an international youth conference. Throughout the course of my internship, I was dispatched to several interesting conferences but the most exhilarating experience by far was being part of a live transcription team for the 9th Asian Pacific Conference for the Deaf, with Prince Akishino providing the welcoming speech. I discovered that the high-energy and pressurized environment was something that really appealed to me.
It was also exciting to work on the Anime DVD project that Urban Connections completed for Digital Meme, as I was able to put my Korean to use when editing subtitles. Through the various editing, transcribing and translation jobs I gained valuable insights into industries ranging from the automobile sector to specialized medical fields. The uniqueness of Urban Connections is that the CEO, Larry Greenberg directly oversees your growth as an intern in the company and places a lot of faith in your abilities. I feel that my internship at Urban Connections has given me a head-start to starting a professional career after I graduate. I was given real responsibilities, amazing opportunities and was able to experience a thriving, global environment.
Carlos Enrique Álvarez Galindo February 2007 - March 2007Para mi primer estancia en Japón queria hacer unas prácticas en una compañía situada en el país. Queria mejorar mis conocimientos de japonés y además reunir experenicas sumergiéndome en la vida laboral japonesa.
Por esos motivos solicité un puesto en Urban Connections.
En mi primer día laboral en Urban Connections se me presentó Larry Greenberg el jefe de la compañía. Fue un recibimiento muy agradable. A continuación me presentó a varios compañeros de trabajo. Todos eran muy amables. Ese día tuve que traducir cartas para hacer la promoción de una película japonesa. Fue la primera vez que trabajé en ese ámbito del marketing. Ha sido muy interesante ver como funciona la promocion de películas en el extranjero, como por ejemplo en Alemania, España y Sudamérica. En los días siguientes tuve que hacer varios trabajos de traducción, pero todos con un equipo respaldándome y ayudándome siempre que era necesario. Pero mi principal trabajo era la traduccion de los subtítulos de una película japonesa muda llamada “Taki no Shiraito”. Fue un trabajo muy interesante y nuevo para mi. Ya había traducido páginas web o cartas pero nunca tuve la oporutunidad hacer esa clase de trabajo. Tuve que tener en cuenta muchas cosas, como por ejemplo, no hacer los subtitulos demasiado largos.
Siempre tuve a compañeros que me ayudaron constantemente.
Mi mayor duda cuando empezé en Urban Connections era, que sólo tuviera que hacer trabajos típicos de practicantes, como hacer fotocopias o traer el café. En cambio no tuve que hacer esa clase de trabajos. Estuve totalmente integrado en un equipo, teniendo mi propio área de trabajo.
Fue una gran experencia para mi el trabajar en Urban Connections. Pude alcanzar todos mis metas. Hasta conocí a gente muy capaz y amable. Sin dudas una de mis experencias más importantas hasta ahora.