After growing up in rural Cambodia under particularly poor circumstances, oftentimes even without basic amenities such as water, sanitary facilities, or electricity, many young students are still adjusting to the modern and progressive life that Phnom Penh has to offer.
Especially when it comes to individual career planning in an ever-changing environment like Cambodia’s capital, it is important that Thomlang – Cambodian Youth Support offers professional mentorship for young students who don’t have an educated familial background to give them this form of guidance during their first job application process.
CYS is constantly putting effort into preparing our students for successful careers. Our mentorship ranges from encouraging them to enroll in language schools and computer schools to helping them find part-time jobs or internships that match their unique interests.
Chamnan and Gung are two university students who are currently in the third year of their Bachelor of Psychology major. Both aspire to be psychologists in order to help children, providing them with the emotional and professional support that neither of them was fortunate enough to receive in their own upbringing.
CYS reached out to the Phnom Penh Autism Center, a specialized clinic consisting of an international team of doctors and behavior and speech therapists who provide care, intervention, and therapy to kids on the autism spectrum disorder.
Following our request, the Phnom Penh Autism Center offered a three-month internship for the first time ever. From January to April, Gung and Chamnan were able to assist the therapists in their daily tasks, from playing with the children to one-on-one sessions with their parents.
Read more about their experience below:
Our names are Chamnan and Gung. We are studying Psychology at the Royal University of Phnom Penh. This year we did an internship at the Phnom Penh Autism Center, where we learned a lot about caring for children.
This NGO helped us to apply for this internship because we didn’t know how to approach this request and how to send out applications. We are very thankful for this because this internship was an amazing opportunity for us.
During our internship at PPAC, we met a lot of children on the autism spectrum. The therapists taught us a lot about how to work together as a team, how to manage children, and how to prepare special activities and games for the children.
Our three months at PPAC were so good because we learned so much about childcare methods that we didn’t know about before. We gained experience in how to teach children to have patience, to help themselves, to go to the bathroom, and to express their needs and ask for help.
Thank you for everything,
Chamnan and Gung
After completing their three-month internship, both students received an official letter of recommendation from the director of PPAC. In it, the director states that both students not only worked hard but also described them as “exceptionally gifted at getting the most out of others while always maintaining a positive attitude.“
This internship did not only have a positive impact on Gung’s and Chamnan’s personal experience, professional goals, and self-esteem, but it will also be a great addition to their resumes and help them with future job applications.