Vocational training in Germany is an optional system for school leavers to learn on the job rather than in a classroom. The training can go in either a business or technical direction, lasts two to three years, with a chance to become a permanent member of staff at the end. There are different training programmes; you can either attend vocational school for a few months before working at a company, or as I have done, go to school for two days during the week and then work for the remaining three.
So, why did I join? Before I started my vocational training, I studied chemistry at Goethe University in Frankfurt. However, I soon realised I wanted to work in a business field rather than in the sciences. I noticed there are many business management students in Germany but that there is very limited exposure to gaining practical experience, which was important for me. Therefore, I joined the vocational training programme so I could continue to learn whilst gaining crucial work experience.
At FDM, I have been given a diverse range of responsibilities and duties to help contribute to the overall success and smooth running of the office. These include coordinating the Frankfurt assessment days, internal data management, marketing research, ad-hoc projects and office management tasks. I have learnt to overcome challenges during my time at FDM and develop my organisational skills. In turn, this has made me feel like part of the team rather than a stereotypical intern getting coffee.
Whilst at FDM, I have particularly enjoyed assisting the office management in organization procedures such as helping with the Christmas gift delivery for internal staff and ‘Mounties’. These roles have required me to stay focused, organised and, of course, neat. I am glad that the other departments in the business are able to work more efficiently with me in support.
I have had a great couple of months at FDM and am looking forward to where the rest of my vocational training takes me.