Congratulations to Katja Wiggert, a highly enthusiastic and creative Office Management student from Germany who took part in the ADC Internship Programme in November 2018. Katja was nominated London’s student of the month after she left an unforgettable impression at her work placement with her all positive go-getter attitude. She was referred to as, I quote “A pretty cool woman!” and here is why:
Tell me a little bit about yourself and your background.
I am a mother of two, live in a small town, working in the capital and I am the “calendar” of the family. In my free time, I like to photograph and document my travels through Europe. When documenting my travels I always get very creative and can thus switch off from everyday office life.
What sparked your interest in Office Management?
I've always loved organising and when I got the chance to do another education, 10 years after completing my graphic arts studies, I immediately took it.
What was the best moment of your trip?
It is not really a moment, it was luck to have a wonderful host family with whom I had the opportunity to meet other interns from other countries I can now call friends.
What was your work placement like at AW Childs Estate Agent?
With the internship at AW Childs I had made a real stroke of luck. My supervisor, as well as my boss have shown me a lot and explained. They have helped me to be courageous and to believe in me. It was a wonderful working atmosphere and I felt treated at eye level all the time.
What were your tasks?
I was allowed to write e-mails, pay by phone, pick up print jobs and the best thing was that I was able to present a flat to a customer completely alone and he took the flat one day later. It has meant a lot to me that AW Childs trusted me so much.
You were nominated because of your fantastic attitude as well as the great feedback received by your work placement. How do you think you achieved that?
I think it was just because I really wanted to be part of the company. Nobody can take those 3 weeks experience away from me and I had to organise a lot to go to London, so I just wanted to get the most experience out of them.
How would you compare your work placement to your work or school back home?
Because AW Childs is a bit smaller than the German company where I am employed I would say that I had more chances to develop myself creatively. On the other hand, in Germany I have the chance to go through so many different departments that I can take a lot of experience for my Life. In Germany work starts early but you have more of the day, on the other hand, in England you can stay awake longer and start the morning a little quieter. Working hours would be the biggest difference for me now.
How has this experience inspired you?
I'm thrilled to know that there is not only one country where you can make your dreams come true. The whole world is at your feet when you're ready to do something for it.
What have you learned from the trip?
It's worth investing in your future, no matter how old you are, you're never too old for new experiences and adventures.
What have you found most exciting about working and living in a foreign country?
The most exciting thing in London was the meeting of the many different cultures and how a little small talk can save a day. I never felt like I was a foreigner but just an individual among many and that's wonderful.
What are your plans for the future?
Much is still open for my future, you never know where it will take you. Sure, I can say that I will finish my education and will never stop learning. There's a saying that I applied to the program back then, it says, "If you're the smartest person in the room, then you're in the wrong room." And that's the motto I want to live my Life with.
What would your advice be for students who are about to go on the Internship Programme?
Be aware that it is a different country with different customs. Use the chance to improve your language skills and change money beforehand. Before you go there sit down and see what great possibilities you have in this wonderful city and make it your own journey and memory!
Katja visited London with our Internship Programme, a project eligible for EU funding. We also arrange projects in Dublin. Don't hesitate to contact us if you would like more information about what we do and how to get funding. Call a Country Manager today on +44 2084249424 or send us a message.