I don’t know any other way to write about this than to be transparent.
I am writing this from Philadelphia, not New Delhi. I expressed my discontent for enduring weeks without work or pleasantries to my supervisor at Sesame Workshop India. I told her I felt neither needed nor wanted – she responded by telling me it was my fault because I was not motivated. I explained how hurtful it was that I never received an orientation, that I still know barely anything about the brand, she told me these tasks were not her responsibility. I told her how jarring it was that half of the office gets laid off which includes my other supervisor and that her not telling me until two weeks after the fact was not okay – she said she was not allowed to tell me.
On paper, Sesame Workshop India was going to be a fruitful and engaging place with deliverables that would refine skills I’d learned in class and present new skills which would send me back home a competitive candidate for meaningful work. What was supposed to be the pinnacle of IEDP for its tailored and supportive access to international development work was instead a collection of missteps by Sesame which has left me…well….writing a blog about how I left my internship early.
I fully expected the possibility of an unfavorable supervisor, or banal assignments. I’d considered how to respond to an office I don’t like or rules with which I disagree. I’d entertained the likelihood that I may not get feedback or obtain the support I’d prefer. In my mind, the worst possible scenario was having a ton of work and no support, and that was okay. A world in which I had no work and no supervision was not fathomable…until it was. Now, I am sitting at home trying to process the empty spot on my resume, the months of missed work, the tuition dollars, and my weakened self-confidence. As a new graduate, these feelings are as depleting and disempowering as Delhi’s suffocating 127F heat.
This blog is not meant to be gloomy or cynical. Being in India taught me so much about the world and my role in it which deserves its own post. However, what happened at Sesame Workshop is my experience. Early on in IEDP, I learned the importance of how stories get told and who tells them, so I am putting that into practice and being open about mine. Future IEDPers should know the scope of possibility and current IEDPers should know that their friend is home safe and why.
I don’t know what will happen next, but I still believe in happy endings. I will update this blog as developments happen. 💜