Wednesday 10 August 2016

The Apprenticeship: fusing work and study (p.4)

Dominik Weiss
In the Apprenticeship-series on this blog, we follow our students who have successfully pursued an apprenticeship*. In
this final episode, Saint Gobain's Purchasing Department  apprentice Dominik explains his take on the value of the apprenticeship.

Before coming to ESSEC, doing an apprenticeship was not on my To-Do List, as I had already undertaken a Trainee Program before. Therefore, my plan was to complete an internship in France and then to finish the Master as quickly as possible.

In the end and against all odds I decided to do an apprenticeship. Why did I make this decision? The most important reasons to me were the language factor, the responsibility and the career opportunities.

As I want to start working in France after graduation, my French level has to have a certain standard which for me is not reachable through a six months’ internship. I have a lot of responsibility in my apprenticeship which was essential to me and the crucial factor to take on the position. Even though I have already worked for almost two years in a company, this was an experience and level of responsibility I haven’t had before. An apprenticeship is an investment of the company in you. This is a very valuable professional experience as it shows the added value that you bring to the company, especially while working in another country.

Personally I found my apprenticeship on the “Forum Campus”, which is a career fair organized once a year at ESSEC. I hosted Saint-Gobain during the Forum and had a chance to have long and interesting conversations with the company representatives. Even though I applied to different positions and companies online, the best way to create interest and get noticed is by talking to companies’ representatives in person. This also fastened the process and opened the door for my apprenticeship.

"...I found my apprenticeship on the 'Forum Campus'..."

So far it has been two months since I have started the apprenticeship and I really enjoy it. I have just started fulltime, as my semester ended, and I will get my new missions for the rest of the year soon. 

Based on the reasons mentioned above an apprenticeship for me is something that a student should always have on the back of his mind regardless of the fact that he might have already enough work experience to validate for the degree. In any case it is a great experience!

*An apprenticeship constitues a fusing of work and studying: the apprentice (the student) studies part time and works the rest of the time for a company. The company in return pays the tuition fees of the student and a salary. In the past, quite a few students have financed their studies this way. Read more on apprenticeships here.

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