Jenna Coffman

Illinois, USA


Jenna joined the VACorps program in January 2024 as part of her GAP year, and participated in a human rights law internship. She will begin her studies in Psychology and Political Science at the University of Colorado Boulder in September 2024.

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I chose to intern in Cape Town because of its unparalleled beauty and diverse offerings, from the mountains to the gorgeous beaches and the vibrant culture of its people. I have had an amazing experience getting to know this city and have been so grateful to live here for the past two months.

I did my internship with an immigration law firm and learned so much during my time there. I was entrusted with significant responsibilities and felt that my contributions were both impactful and valued. I was able to draft documents, search for case law, sit in on trials, and deliver documents to the high court. This internship gave me immense insight into the field of immigration law, and I’m leaving Cape Town knowing that it is, in fact, something I am incredibly passionate about and cannot wait to pursue as a potential future career path.

I truly believe that the people make the place and will never forget the connections I’ve made here. Living with other interns made this experience so much more fun because I always had people to hang out with whether at our apartments, exploring Cape Town, getting food, or going out. Some of my favorite activities I did with my friends were taking the cable car up Table Mountain for sunset, visiting Robben Island, walking to our favorite restaurants in Observatory, wine tasting in the beautiful vineyards, seeing penguins at Boulders Beach, and exploring the city on the red bus tour.

The staff at VACorps are so helpful and supportive, and I knew that I could go to them with any questions or problems, or if I ever just wanted to say hi. The Friday activities scheduled by the staff were always a highlight of my week. Bringing together the gap year students and college students was a fun way to connect with even more people. One of my favorite Friday activities was our last one where we got to go out on a boat and see seals, dolphins, penguins, and a beautiful view of the city. Other favorites were visiting seal island, a surfing lesson at Muizenberg Beach, and exploring Cape Point.

Reflecting on my time in Cape Town fills me with gratitude and fond memories. The supportive community at my internship site and VACorps, coupled with unforgettable experiences shared with newfound friends, have left an indelible mark on me. I leave with a profound appreciation for this enriching journey and am already looking forward to returning to this extraordinary city.