Thanks to an initiative by my university, I was given the opportunity to intern in TÜV Rheinland Singapore Ltd. Contrary to other schools, my school’s attachment is over a span of 12 months. No, that is not a typo mistake; my internship is one year long. It is like committing into a relationship with a deadline. First, you get to know the person and feelings start creeping in day by day. When you muster enough courage to commit, you realize your days are numbered. Counting down, you cannot help but feel the bittersweet emotions permeate through your system. That is why I feel deeply about this internship.
Okay, going back on track. I am currently an undergraduate majoring in Railway thus in TUVR-SG, I am appointed with the role of Assistant RAMS Engineer in the Mobility Railway department.
So what is my Locomotive
To be very truthful – being in a niche field and yet only two years of academic drilling, I did not want to commit to a specific internship which I had little knowledge of. If I were to commit to a role in an explicit system (for example, signaling) only to realize I have no interest in, I am going to sink into another dilemma on my career path when I graduate.
Just as I was whirled into depression and entered the existential crisis, I came across the internship position in TUVR-SG. Being a consultancy body, the specialty of TÜVR-SG Rail department is System Assurance which provides products of confidence through coordination of multiple disciplines. This would iron out my concern since it allows me to be exposed to many products by different contractors in respective project phases, to various systems for each operator and to interact with the statutory board. Therefore, I am able to get a holistic view and establish a better direction before stepping foot into the industry.
Engine-ous, what did I sign myself for…
Exclusive soundtrack which is unavailable on iTunes or Spotify *drumroll* …aggressive typing on the keyboards from every corner of the office… *stiff smile* Not going to lie, it stressed me out initially to see everyone to be completely productive every day. However, this environment, now, helps me to get into the zone when there are urgent matters to be attended. *cough* like this blog post *cough*
But there are plenty of learning opportunities! Since the railway industry is blooming, naturally, the rail department has many ongoing projects, where I was given opportunities to participate in. Being involved in projects, it also meant to have relevant knowledge and that does not come with a snap of fingers. (Not everyone can be like Thanos, right?) Hence, a bit of time was dedicated to reading stacks of design documents and multiple standards. (*whisper* Exclusive stuff that you cannot extract from merely punching some keywords on the search bar of google ya!)
And there are plenty of cohesion events! Just to name a few, for everyone in the company to get together, we have the annual dinner and lunch to celebrate festivities such as Chinese New Year and Christmas. Such occasions allowed me to interact with colleagues from different departments. Thus, enabling me to have some friendly exchange rather than staring hard on the floor just to avoid awkward eye contacts during the trips back and forth the toilet.
Ez-link pass to tap on the hearts of your colleagues
Speaking of colleagues, the simplest way to befriend them is to join them for lunch breaks! Just like the old phrase “to break bread together” from the Bible. This signifies the power of meals to evoke social interaction and foster relationships. Although good food cannot magically create a qualitative exchange. But well, at least the meal was yummy, right? In all seriousness, food is definitely a celebratory means to reward ourselves from a long day of work. Putting aside our laptops, letting our hair down, and chatting about things beyond just work.
Low resolution picture but high quality gathering!
For us, one of our many conversations is our aspiration to be the next winner of the lottery! This was also taken minutes before our Boss – Brian bragged about his RM8 winnings from the lottery!
Still makes my heart go Bedok, Bedok
Despite having to brave through the hectic commute daily for the past 9 months, I still find myself looking forward to work and eager to inform my colleagues on the sweet deals I found on random e-commerce sites. On top of that, being one of the youngest members in the company, everyone would be looking over us and ensured that we took our meals. Such small gestures never fail to warm my heart until today.
Trivial stuff aside, this internship has definitely been the guiding light for me in understanding the rail industry. The entire learning journey has been like… going through a food sampling session? I got a taste of the different disciplines within the Railway Engineering. Through the work demands, it has honed both my cognitive and non-cognitive skills and made me aware of my strengths and weaknesses. Thus, preparing me for the workforce so I can make a sensible decision on the job positions to take on in due time.
Next Station, back to school…
As my internship chapter closes, it also marks the start of the next. I will be returning to school to clear the remaining modules before I officially graduate. I know I will miss the culture and the colleagues dearly. Nonetheless, I am eternally grateful for the fond memories and knowledge gained, TÜV Rheinland Singapore Ltd. This internship has not only provided opportunities to immerse myself in the railway industry but also made me grow as a person. Here is to constant learning and growing! *Champagnes clink*
This is Ling Yi signing off! Catch CHOO next time~