These past two weeks had a slightly odd start, but ended up on one of the best days I have had in London so far. The work I was given was to prepare and put together activities for kids to do at two large celebration ceremonies that were happening; one last Friday and one this past Wednesday. A large part of this job was glorified arts and crafts. It felt odd being in the office for 8 hours a day just working on art projects. It felt almost like the people I worked with were just giving me things to do around the office.
My opinion changed when I was able to go to the large event this past Wednesday. I got the opportunity to both work with other members of the team, but also the opportunity to see all of the projects that I had been putting together for two weeks put to use and enjoyed by the students who attended the end of the year award ceremony. It gave me a real sense of accomplishment knowing that the projects that I had been put in charge of were not only used, but also necessary for the overall success of the event. On top of that, I also helped with setting up and running the AV component of the event, which occurred in the Barbican.
Although it was a tad tough at times to really see that I was adding to the event, or that I was really being given work around the office, the end of the year summer ceremony made it perfectly clear that my work was necessary, and that the office is really glad that I am there.
Week four at work has been different from my past three weeks. For the last three, I was asked to do small tasks that typically were to put together activities for groups of kids that would act as a vessel to foster discussion. This was because there were two large scale events the past two weeks and at both of them large groups of children was going to be there.
This week however, saw that I was given a different set of tasks. Although I went on a school visit, the majority of this week was spent writing and preparing reports to be sent out to various organizations. The school visit was interesting. It was a end of the year evaluation for the students to see what they thought about the program this past year, and whether or not they were interested in possibly doing it again next year. The reports I have been working on involved collecting the data from these end of the year forms, as well as the data from the activities that I had previously prepared that were at the large events. It feels as if I have almost been promoted, because the reports I have been working on are very important. They will be sent out to the trustees of Envision, as well as the schools that I have been working with and even officials over at TfL who were involved in one of the programs.
Culturally, I was told that British people are very serious about their work day. That although they were not known to over work, leaving promptly when 8 hours have been reached, it wasn’t uncommon to work through lunch. This has not been the case for me. When one o’clock rolls around, all action in my office ceases, and everyone takes their lunch break for an hour. The few times I have worked through lunch, everyone in the office told me that I needed to go on my lunch break, no matter how busy I thought I was. Also, no one at the office, except for me, leaves after eight hours. They work late about every day of the week.