Dylan discusses his year working abroad in Germany

by | Oct 28, 2021 | Languages and Cultures, Undergraduate | 0 comments

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, I was still able to take part in the year abroad as part of my Modern Language & Business Management (German) course. I had started looking at placements quite early on in the year, and around March time I had my paid placement confirmed at Framatome Gmbh, a nuclear power company, as a Supply Chain Management intern. I would be working in Erlangen, Germany, in the South, around 2 hours from Munich. I had found my accommodation beforehand, so at the end of August, I packed my bags and headed to Erlangen!

I arrived in the afternoon and was greeted by my flatmate and set up my room and went on to explore my new town. The first day of work soon arrived and I had a tour of the office building and got to know my new line manager. The bulk of work involved working the Angra 3 project, which meant processing and logging the documentation relating to the parts and machinery, being used to build a new power plant in Brazil. The majority of my work was on Microsoft Excel, I had some basic knowledge prior to the placement, however my Excel skills improved dramatically as I had built upon these skills every day. Of course, due to the nationwide lockdown, the work was changed to remote, however this gave me the experience of working from home.

Outside of the placement, there was lots of fun to be had in Erlangen. I found the German beer gardens to be especially fun, especially during the Euros (which was particularly entertaining when England beat Germany 2-0!). I was in a student town, so the bars and pubs were filled with lots of students who were all very friendly, I got lucky to meet the people I did, and made many good friendships which I believe will last long into the future.

All in all, having taken part in the year abroad placement, it had definitely changed my perspective on my general outlook of my lifestyle. The year was filled with many ups and downs however I was grateful for these challenges as I have come out more independent, resilient and confident in my abilities. I have made friends for life, and I will never forget the experiences I have had in Germany. This year abroad has partly influenced my decisions when thinking about post-university life, as I am currently applying to jobs in Germany with the hope of moving and working there after I graduate.  I highly recommend all students to take part in a year abroad, if possible, as you never know the experiences and opportunities it may lead to.