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Meet Robin in Melbourne!

Meet Robin in Melbourne!

"The people are very friendly! They talk to you more often, and it is easier to connect with people on the streets."
We asked Robin some questions about his experience in Australia, read the complete interview below:

Why did you choose to go abroad?
To gain general experience, not only work based. Before I will start my Master’s program I was looking into opportunities to improve my English skills. I finished my studies in Business Logistics this year, and want to start my Master’s program next year. In the meantime, I want to gain experience, specifically working experience and build on my resume.

How did you find your internship?
I started to search for an internship by myself, but I did not do so well as I was a bit overwhelmed by the amounts of available internships. That is why I contacted Stage-Australia. It is great to have a contact person if I need anything.
The placement took about 5 to 6 weeks. Eventually, I was placed in the 5th company.

How do you feel about your internship so far?
Pretty good! I am doing more and more work by myself, I am getting more responsibilities, and really enjoy it. I work as a Sales & Marketing support. For sales support I prepare quotes for customers, place orders, request things from suppliers, and contact suppliers as well as customers. For marketing I am helping with the social media, due to my limited experience in marketing I got the opportunity to start online trainings and now I am learning more about Marketing during work. The company gives me the chance to do that! This opportunity is pretty good, because it has the benefit of obtaining certificates.
We work with approximately 6-11 8-14 people in the office, and I have one supervisor for Sales and one for Marketing. There are no other interns yet, but one is starting on Monday and another one is starting mid-October. Additionally, one girl just finished before I started the internship.

How does the Australian culture differ from your culture and what has impressed you the most?
The people are very friendly! They talk to you more often, and it is easier to connect with people on the streets. I feel like things are a bit more laid back, but maybe that is just this office. The team is very hard working but the atmosphere is  laid back & very friendly. The team is pretty mixed with regards to age, we have some young people and a few older guys.

Could you take us through a day? What is your routine?
I walk to work, because I live in a flat that is only a 10-minute walk to the office. Every morning I start at 9 am. We typically start the day off with a team meeting, this meeting is a conference call, and everyone says what they are doing and what they are going to do. This meeting takes place from 8:30 from 8.45 so I’m still at home during the call.
When I arrive at the office I start with processing supplier invoices and with creating invoices for customers. I will also wait for emails or for someone to give me a task to do. Additionally, I can get some phone calls and sometimes I must make calls to suppliers. For the lunchbreak, I bring food from home and I usually go for a walk after eating. On Friday, we always have a catered team lunch.
After work I go to the gym, and I go for a walk afterwards. Everything is close to where I live so I can walk everywhere. When I go to the city I take the tram, but everything I need to do daily is walkable.

What is your housing situation? Do you live in an apartment? Roommates? Housemates?
I live in a Flat with one Australian guy. I found the place on a platform called Flatmates. On the platform people who have a spare room are requesting roommates on it and you can contact people yourself. I contacted 5 flats, and visited 5, but a lot of them were not what it looked like on the pictures.
When I first arrived I stayed in an Airbnb. I arrived on Saturday and had to start on Monday. The housing situation made me a little bit stressed the first week as I had to work until 5 and then had to go visit potential flats. I started looking for flats in Germany before I left, but lot of them want you to go to a visitation.

Have you made any trips so far? (Or have you trips planned/in mind?)
I have done just a few small trips close to the city. Besides that I have not made so many trips so far as it was pretty cold. I have planned some small trips on the weekends.
I will go on a one week trip with work this month to Geelong, which is a small city close to Melbourne. I will drive to the city with a colleague. I am staying until Christmas in Australia.
My older brother is going to visit me at the end of my program and together we will make a trip of 3 weeks after which we then fly back home together.

What are your future plans?
When I get back I will start pursuing my Master’s Degree in Germany, I don’t know for sure yet in what field, but I think Business, Logistics or anything like Business Management.
My English has definitely improved already!

How has this experience abroad helped you grow both professionally and personally? 
I think not that much professionally, but a lot personally! The internship does not exactly match with what I studied, and it is not what I have planned to do in the future, but I am still learn many valuable things every day. I have also learned how to live by myself and how to get used to a new situation and country.

Would you recommend others to do their internship/traineeship abroad? Why?
Yes, totally! I think if you do an internship in Germany or in your specific home country or home town you don’t get to leave your comfort zone, which is a pretty nice thing to do. In addition, you don’t only learn business related things, but you will also grow personally.

If you could express your internship experience in three words, what would these be?
Personal-growth, Great, Inspiring!

I would recommend people to do an internship as soon as possible! If you have finished studying I think it is even tougher to still go to a different country. Most people want to start working after university. Therefore, I would recommend doing an internship program like this as early as possible!