In mid-September 2022, it was time for me to head south to the beautiful city of Almeria in Andalusia, Spain. I can still remember the first day well. The suitcase is packed and a feeling of curiosity and excitement accompanies me and of course many questions, How will it be there? Will I get along with the host family? Are the colleagues nice? In retrospect, many unnecessary worries, it was a very nice time that was also strongly influenced by the helpful, loving host family and of course the colleagues who were always accommodating and always had an open ear for me.
Why did I decide to do an internship abroad in the first place?
Several factors played a role here: I wanted to put my language skills to the test, but I also wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to gain new work experience. I also found it very nice to leave my own comfort zone and to plunge into an adventure and to find my way around far away from the familiar area, both on a professional and private level.
What were my activities on site?
My tasks were in the field of food and agrochemical analysis. I was able to get to know a variety of different types of analyses used for the analysis of foodstuffs such as tomatoes, cucumbers and many other cultivated vegetables. However, the analyses in the field of agrochemistry were probably the most memorable. Here, the focus was on the examination and extraction processes of insect fats and proteins, which also required handling the little animals, a job that is probably not for everyone. Even today I can still remember the multitude of flour beetles in their various stages of development. From larva to mealworm to beetle and even if it was a little strange to work with the insects at the beginning, it was a very ordinary activity like any other, maybe because of its peculiarity one of the most fascinating in retrospect.
What was my conclusion after three weeks?
It was an incredible time that I hope to remember for a long time and of course my thoughts are not only about the work with the friendly and funny colleagues, but also the host family and the place itself with its beautiful beaches and the great weather, although I learned that for some people a temperature of 25 degrees is a sign that the beginning of autumn is in the doors. But of course I am also very happy to be back home and also to have arrived at the TÜV to prepare me now for my final exam in the summer of 2023 and strengthened with the accumulated knowledge and experience from the internship abroad to face me the last section of the training.
Fabian Alessandro Stach
Chemical laboratory trainee
Giving feedback correctly in the job
Formulating salary expectations correctly