Interview with an Indian FOM Student
Joyal Emmanuel about his “Buddy-program” and studying in Germany
Joyal, thanks for giving us an insight into your studying- and working life here in Germany today. First of all I would like to know: What would you say is the biggest difference between India and Germany?
Well, there are many, but the main differences are culture, food, language, education and quality of life. India is a country that can be considered as a mini-continent because each state has its own culture, language, and food. Even though the language dialect changes according to the region, the culture in Germany remains almost the same. It makes life easier for foreigners to understand the culture, unlike India. The education systems show some parallels, except that in India students have to finish their degree to take up employment. At FOM, students have the opportunity to work after school while continuing higher studies. Moreover, when it comes to people, both are welcoming in their nature. The people in Germany are happy when they bring their culture closer to others and their eyes light up, when a foreigner speaks their German language.
Haha, well then: What´s your favorite German word? Let me hear it!
One of my colleagues made me pronounce "Streichholzschächtelchen" (laughs). I was even able to pronounce it. Also the word "Zeit" is very much connected to German culture because it is based on "punctuality" and "planning" – and they both give meaning to time.
Wow, you sound like a professional and “Streichholzschächtelchen” is not that easy! So, since you´re almost done with the study program – what´s your resume about studying “Big Data & Business Analytics” at FOM?
FOM has opened a new path to me and the other students who were willing to learn the new technologies that are gaining importance in the business world. The studies at FOM have not only provided theoretical knowledge but made us students be valuable resources. I was a beginner in the world of data, but now I am confident in dealing with data. Our professors were committed not only in the academic accomplishments of us students but also in the personal growth. That has helped us to be confident in face business executives of the companies during the interviews and working in a new environment. The university has taken a big task of preparing a group of foreign students to get ready for the local job market. My hard work, along with education at FOM, has made me a better person.
That is great to hear! And how did you decide for FOM and why did you want to study in Germany?
As an Indian, I have always admired Germany as a country. The reasons are plenty, but only a few are people, culture, and governance. Also a private university that has excelled in recent decades is always a great choice for a student like me since I was interested in learning more about the new growth in the world of data. Now I have an opportunity to obtain a degree from the largest and best private university in this country.
I see. And now you can already use your knowledge about the world of data in the internship you´re doing? How did you find that job?
Yes, I am a working student at RWE Supply & Trading GmbH in Essen. My “buddy” from the FOM Buddy-program guided me to be a part of the company where she is working. She is a German FOM student and helped me in understanding the requirements of a German employer and searching for a job opportunity. It was a great help to associate with a person who has several years of experience and who supports me in every situation.
So do you think the “Buddy-program” was helpful? What does the program include?
Yes, I definitely think the Buddy-program was helpful. A person with an open mind to help fellow human beings is the best gift that an individual can get away from home. The program is helpful to understand a range of information about the people, country, culture, language, places, companies, job opportunities, and many more. My Buddy is there in every need I ask for with no hesitation. Whenever I am not sure about something, I contact my Buddy, and she helps in every possible way. A person who always motivates, when I am not confident about something, that is my Buddy for me. There are many things a Buddy can do, such as sharing knowledge about culture, food, rules, and people, guide to get a job opportunity, go around places and just share a few good moments and thoughts.
I can believe that this is important when you´re so far from home in a country you don´t know. So what´s the hardest for you? What do you miss the most?
The hardest part for me is missing home. Another difficult thing was seeing the sun until late at night. It was a challenge for me for a few months, as I am not used to it. The language is hard to learn, but I really want to learn it.
And how does your everyday life look like at the moment?
I would describe these days as the wonderful days of my life. Because I am getting a German degree from the best private university and have a part-time position at a leading German energy company. When I look back at my beginning, the results I have achieved are satisfying. As I submitted my Master thesis, now the focus is on successfully finishing the colloquium and getting a full-time position in a company. I spend three days of my week at the company, along with German language learning. The other three days of the week, I spend in learning new skills, German Language, and applying for jobs. On the weekends I go cycling or around the city with my friends and on Sunday, I go to church and spend time talking to family and friends.
That sounds pretty busy. So what are your plans for the future?
For now I don´t plan on going back to India. First, I want to improve my German. I want to be a part of Germany and bring my beloved ones here. I want to meet more people and integrate even more into society. Also, I want to travel around the country and neighboring countries. Moreover, in a couple of years I would love to have a job position that I enjoy and bring the best result to the company.
Joyal, thank you so much for this conversation. It was great talking to you.
Jana Antkowiak, FOM press