After several weeks of juggling term papers, rugby practices, and even a bit of traveling, I’ve finally seemed to settle back into a somewhat normal rhythm here in Berlin. One major advantage of studying in Europe for a full year (as opposed to one semester) is the enormous amount of free time I have in between terms. For about two months my only academic obligation is to choose my courses for the summer. Otherwise, I can more or less do anything I want until mid-April.
This is a preview of One Year in Berlin: An Internship.
Finding a German company willing to give an internship to an 18-year-old American girl with no experience and rough German skills isn’t exactly the easiest thing to do. But somehow, I managed to do just that.
After being accepted into the Congress-Bundestag Vocational Youth Exchange Program, my next step was to decide in what field I wanted to intern. I decided to take a leap of faith and try to somehow work in the fashion industry—a passion of mine that was put on the backburner due to the limited possibilities available for a girl growing up in small-town Nebraska. I was lucky enough to be placed with a host family in Berlin, the so-called “fashion capital” of Germany, and that’s when I began my internship search.
This is a preview of How I Got a Fashion Internship in Germany.
They say that life is not about the destination, but rather the journey toward it. In the case of finding and establishing a career path in Germany, that statement has never been more true. It is not so much about what one wants to become, but rather how one plans to even get there.
As a student looking to start a career in Germany, one faces many obstacles. These challenges include applying for a residential/working permit, or even attempting to understand why your end income seems so meagre after tax contributions. It is a complicated system when one is initially exposed to it, but bear in mind, it is a system that works.
This is a preview of How to Launch Your Career in Germany.
If you had asked me two years ago if I would be here in Cologne, Germany, the fourth largest city in the country, I would have likely laughed in your face and asked, “With what money?!”
However, approaching my final year of college and with no clear plans other than graduating, I felt the pressure building; coinciding with this pressure, an urge to explore myself and the world. After all, how much can you really know about yourself if you’ve never been uncomfortable, or left to fend for yourself in the unknown?
This is a preview of Expat Life: How I Found a Job and Moved to Germany.
A whole new level of cultural shock awaited me once I entered the working world in Germany. After my internship, I took my first full time job at a University. At home I had already worked 10 years before coming to Germany and four years within the same field. Having studied anthropology back in the United States, I knew about cultural differences; however, being the only non-Germany on my team presented a whole new level of differences.
This is a preview of Working in Germany: Culture Shock.
I’m not a perfect guardian and I was a bad au pair. My temper ran short and my cooking skills didn’t exist and all I wanted to do was go out in Berlin, dance, ride my bike, and talk to boys. But I was an au pair. So I had to work.
I went out in the mornings and late at night and made it, somehow, in time every day to pick Jason up from the Kita, but sometimes we were tired and rode the trains. Sometimes we were rushed and ate french fries. We watched movies. Sometimes I was so frustrated and tired of the six year old who couldn’t take care of himself and followed me around all day and needed to be read bedtime stories, so sometimes at night I just closed his curtains and closed his door and then closed my door, too.
This is a preview of An Au Pair’s Story: The Ups and the Downs.
After obtaining degrees in English Literature and English Secondary Education,Sean Lords packed up his bags and left for Seoul, South Korea where he lived for three years teaching English abroad. Sean has since returned to the States and is currently at work on his Master’s degree.
When traveling internationally, the ability to speak English is a valuable skill. Because many are interested in learning this language that is now spoken across the globe, travelers and citizens of many countries will often attempt to use you (a native speaker of English) to practice on. How do you say____ in English? In an attempt to better their fluency, non-native speakers of English may at first flatter and then annoy you—but don’t despair, there is a mutually agreeable compromise at hand!
This is a preview of Working in Germany: Tips for ESL Teachers.