by: Radwan Al Khabbaz, Tadarab intern at Deloitte, Middle East

Look around you for the best thing you can get. Set high goals and remember that there are no limits for your achievements as there are no limits for your dreams.

Friday, June 2nd, 2017.

As I reach the middle of my internship at Deloitte, I remember when I first met the company’s Human Resources (HR) team at the job fair in Damascus and saw the big flyer behind them with the Tadarab (the Deloitte Middle East Internship program) logo. I was standing on the corner reserved by the auditing giant and all I was thinking of was: “I want to be there”. Ever since I decided to major in accounting, my goal has been to join a global firm—Deloitte being number one on my list. With a high mix of emotions, I gathered my faith and took the first step towards what I hoped (and still hope) will be my successful career.

I approached the booth to inquire about the Tadarab internship program at Deloitte and was welcomed by two ladies from the HR department. The way they stood and spoke to me immediately set them apart from the rest of the employers. They were very helpful and guided me on the application process sharing all the necessary details. That was it! It was there and then, that conversation that made future with Deloitte something palpable. A door opened.

Few weeks after that encounter, I received an email informing me about the details of the “Assessment Day” at the Damascus office. Any feeling of nervousness I had was washed away with the signature smiles of the HR team. I could feel the enthusiasm flowing from the warm handshakes and the tone of their voices when I entered the office. Everything went as well as I had hoped during the assessment day. To my great joy, I was invited for an interview later that month.

Then, it finally happened! After several days of waiting, my phone rang—it was Deloitte. I was hopeful and confident, but still very anxious. I still remember that voice telling me that I had successfully passed all the steps and that my internship would start the next week. I was just so excited for this new journey. Many blogs have been written on that first day as an intern with Deloitte, I know, yet I simply can’t resist describing that overwhelming feeling I had on the first day on the job when everyone welcomed me like family. After a brief introduction about Deloitte, I met my Buddy for the first time. I was surprised how quickly I got to be involved in real work. I felt I was a full-time employee, intrigued and challenged to face real life tasks that  usually handled by Deloitte employees.

The first two weeks were dedicated to complete mandatory e-learning courses about key topics such as the confidentiality and ethics. With the beginning of the second month, assignments moved to the next level, and I had the opportunity to deal with more complex situations. At all times during my internship I was being trained, guided, and supported by my Buddy who despite the huge amount of work she had, made sure to give me the needed to ensure the best internship experience possible (A Buddy is an employee that is assigned by Deloitte to guide you and give you assignments during your internship). Tasks were always assigned with a big smile and a sharp encouraging look that tells you that “you can do it”. Everyone was friendly and willing to help without hesitation.

Another thing that added extra excitement and flavor for this journey was attending the “Impact Day”; a day of corporate responsibility and sustainability during which we supported environmental efforts by participating in rehabilitation of the Eco Park in Damascus. It was great experience to enhance social and teamwork skills.

My journey so far is memorable and it feels like just the beginning! As I enter the second half of my Tadarab internship, I proceed with excitement, reminding myself that this is the “big step” I’ve always wanted to take towards the future I’ve always wanted.

“Tadarab” is a Deloitte Middle East talent development program that offers selected college students real-world experience and valuable learning opportunities. It exposes interns to actual work assignments and development through access to over 50,000 eLearning courses. An intern goes through an induction program (Mini Ahlan) and is assigned a buddy for the duration of the internship. Deloitte has received numerous awards in the last few years which include Best Employer in the Middle East, and the Middle East Training & Development Excellence Award by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

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