On a semester exchange program to France, student lands internship with Accenture

  • Shailja Katyal Verma
  • Published 23/02/2023
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UPES School of Design student, Kavya Jayaprakash, who was on a semester exchange program to France, ended up securing a four-and-a-half-month-long paid internship with Accenture there

She hails it as a significant milestone in her academic journey, notwithstanding the initial apprehension about staying in a foreign country, far away from her family. Kavya Jayaprakash, final-year student of UPES School of Design, made the best of her five-month semester exchange program to BESIGN – The Sustainable Design School, France, by managing to secure an internship opportunity with Accenture, one of the most prestigious and largest firms in the consulting industry.

“I went through the interview process and received confirmation about my internship which starts in March. It will be a paid internship of 1600 Euros per month. I am so looking forward to going back to France,” says an elated Kavya.

Kavya returned to India from her exchange program on February 15, but got busy with her preparations for the internship soon after. “Life is pretty hectic at the moment. I am now in my final semester and I am aware that I also have to complete my graduation project with my mentor on time,” she says.

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Kavya Jayaprakash at the BESIGN campus


Kavya has fond memories of her days spent in France as she got to engage with a diverse community on campus, comprising students and faculty from various corners of the world. “There used to be many enlightening discussions about the customs and traditions of each other’s nations. It was an amazing experience, despite the fact that I missed my friends and the UPES campus terribly during those five months abroad,” she recalls with a smile.

BESIGN is a higher education institution for design aspirants, situated in the picturesque locales of Côte d’Azur, south of France. Designers, desirous of addressing some of the most pressing issues confronting the planet, converge here to dwell on sustainable design solutions for the future. While the school offers courses in a variety of disciplines, including urban design, architecture, fashion, and product design, it also trains students in various aspects of film-making, life-centered design and climate change, among other things. Kavya and her classmates also had the opportunity to visit L’Institut Supérieur de l’Environnement (ISE) in Paris for a city development project.

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However, her favourite part of the exchange program was a partnership project about future of human connections and mobility. The students had to work on a four-month-long project with one of the five leading organisations – Accenture, Toyota, Sugar, MSA France and SGH2 Energy. Everyone, from first-year to Master’s degree students, worked together on the project. Once a month, the students would meet with the corporate clients for feedback. At the end of the project, they presented their work at Toyota. “It was an incredible experience for all of us as we got to state our individual contribution to the project. We also learnt that teamwork and collaboration can produce remarkable results and solve some of the biggest real-world challenges,” gushes Kavya.

While this project was underway, Kavya applied for an internship at Accenture. She received unconditional encouragement and support from both BESIGN and UPES to nail the interview.

Her alma mater is extremely proud of her for making purposeful strides in her career. So are her parents who feel that this exposure will add immensely to her knowledge and skills as a design professional.

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Shailja Katyal Verma
Shailja Katyal Verma

The writer is a part of the UPES editorial team

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