To do the things we never thought we could.
I remember the exact place I was sitting when I first found the Editorial Intern position for Jetset Times. How loud it was in Building D café at Marist College. Sneakers scuffling. Many students’ voices speaking at once in the mad rush for lunch.
And then it clicked. Through all my travels abroad—from Shakespeare in London, a semester in Florence, and visits to countries like Greece, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Spain, Hungary, and more—what if I wrote about my experiences? What if I could empower other women to take a leap of faith and travel?
Through this internship I have gained a greater mindset for how we are all more connected than we are different. I have had to do in-depth research on places I have and haven’t visited in order to publish articles to the best of my ability. Will I ever be truly able to represent an entire country to its fullest? No. But the more we become aware of other cultures, traditions, and backgrounds, the more our world will join together than grow apart. That, is something we all need right now more than ever.
Writing these articles have been moments of complete freedom. Thanks to CEO and founder Wendy Hung, she always asked me, “What do you want to write about?” She put the power in my hands. I hope to carry this lesson with me and show others that they have these stories already inside them from their travels. Some weeks I wouldn’t know what to write about. But Wendy allowed me to dig deeper and tell the adventures that I hadn’t told anyone, such as randomly renting ATVs in Mykonos, Greece, or waiting in line for three hours in order to get front row standing room at the Globe Theatre in London.
Never once did Wendy pressure me. When I broke up with my boyfriend, she was there for me to give advice. When my college shut down during the pandemic in the final semester of my senior year, she gave me hope that we would get through this. And did we have some of the most educating discussions about Black Lives Matter and police brutality? Absolutely. She opened my eyes that this life is a continual way of learning, from listening to those around us with unique perspectives and also discovering the trials and triumphs in our own lives. I am so grateful I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on what I’ve been through with each article. It has been a space of healing and hope.
A travel quote that has greatly influenced me throughout these last couple years:
“Get out from your house, from your cave, from your car, from the place you feel safe, from the place that you are. Get out and go running, go funning, go wild, get out from your head and get growing, dear child.”
– Dallas Clayton
Growing up in a small town called Yarmouth, Maine with less than 10,000 people, I dreamed of going to places I had read about or seen in movies. I grew up in a town that is about 98% white. I went to school with people who looked just like me. And I started to realize that this cannot be the only world I know. I told myself from here on out I must make time and save money to travel so my understanding of the world actually represents its diversity. To those who do not currently have the resources to do so, we must support all people in seeing parts of the world they dream about.
I’ve also gained a new appreciation for photography during this internship. In many of my articles, I used my own photos I took while traveling. Oftentimes we complain that a photograph cannot fully capture a moment, which is true in a way. But looking through all these pictures from my travels reminds me of some of the most intimate moments and best laughs I’ve had abroad. Memories I may have forgotten without that certain photo. Taking a snapshot of the world means cementing that fleeting second in time. How we danced on the cobblestone streets at midnight. Ate gelato til our faces hurt. And saw watercolor sunsets unlike any other with our closest friends.
Despite language barriers through my travels, I have learned that anyone understands compassion. Anyone understands a big heart. The more we continue to educate ourselves and widen our perspective, the more we can travel without judgement and indifference. We must remember that a “building” to one might be a home to another. A store abroad to one might be a place supporting an entire extended family to another. Through traveling, our hands have the opportunity to no longer divide but unite in empathy.
I cannot define Jetset Times as an internship. Jetset Times is home. A family. A tribe of unique women and men who are constantly growing and learning from one another. The amount of times I’ve read other Jetsetters’ articles and been struck with awe would be uncountable. These writers have given me a newfound sense of confidence and responsibility to inspire action and change through words. We at Jetset write so others feel less alone and less afraid to think outside the box. Together, we push ourselves to look up.
All of these photos? Times I told myself to raise my head and see a new way of looking at this crazy, diverse, unlimited universe.
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.
– Melody Beattie