Crowdfunder intern: Shaune Oosthuizen

Student intern Shaune Oosthuizen on Crowdfunder, creativity and Cornish beaches

Shaune Oosthuizen began his BSc (Hons) Digital Art and Technology degree in 2012 and, in 2014, chose to gain some work experience to supplement his academic work. After much deliberation over where to go, Shaune became the first Plymouth University intern to join Crowdfunder and as he looks back on a ‘fantastic’ 16 months, he talks us through the valuable experience he had as a Junior Web Producer at their office in Newquay.

What was your main role at Crowdfunder?

I assisted the Senior Web Producer on a variety of different tasks, but mostly I liaised with Crowdfunder project owners and helped them to solve any problems they had, along with developing new features on the website. I used some of the web design techniques I had already encountered but developed lots of new skills too, and it was fantastic to be able to help other people. Crowdfunder has really taken off as a way for people to raise money for a huge variety of exciting projects, and I was so pleased to be able to help some of those people turn their ideas into reality.

What did you learn there?

Without doubt I grew in confidence, learnt how to interact with people from a professional stand point and it deepened my knowledge of how to deal with customers and customer-facing situations. My technical capability grew beyond measure because I was working on real-life projects that had life-changing implications for people. A lot of people were working on huge projects, such as funding a Foo Fighters gig in Cornwall and funding a pool in Perranporth and I was honoured to be part of that.

What did you enjoy the most?

The opportunity to work with the most talented and caring group of people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing, let alone worked with. Every day was brilliant and they made my experience at Crowdfunder one I’ll always cherish.

Any particularly memorable moments you’d like to share?

There are quite a few, but Crowdfunder raising £500,000 in three hours on Crowdcube was pretty world-breaking! I also ran the live streaming suite on Crowdfunder live at the Eden Project, which was quite a lot of responsibility and pretty scary, but I felt a huge sense of achievement when it was complete.

I also loved the fact that the office was right next to the beach, but it was often quite distracting seeing four feet of surf in the background while trying to concentrate on a conference call. I did occasionally get to go out surfing at lunchtime with my bosses… yes, they go surfing at lunchtime.

What’s next for you?

I finished the internship in August 2015 and am now back at Plymouth in my final year of study. I’ve learnt so much and look forward to applying my experience to a future career.

Crowdfunder in Residence, Heather Forster

Being Crowdfunder in Residence at the University has been a fabulous experience. I work with every Faculty - world class professors one minute and first year students the next.

Read more about Heather