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Bc. Janka Kladivíková, UCT Prague, ročník 3

Faculty Faculty of chemical technology
Field of study Synthesis and Manufacturing of Pharmaceuticals
Field of internship Chemistry, Material Science, and Chemical Engineering
Specialization of InternshipChemical Engineering
Internship period (from - to) 10.07.2023 - 03.09.2023
Internship duration (weeks) 8
Transport (means, price) plane, 300€
Insurance/Insurance company UNION
Visa/Work permit (yes/no) yes
Price of Visa 80€
City of Internship Zobrazit místo na mapě  Turkey, Istanbul
Internship reference number TR/2023-003-BAU

About the country

Location of the place

Istanbul is a huge city located on two continents, both Europe and Asia, with population way over 15 million people, which makes it the largest city in Turkey and also the largest city that I have ever had a chance to experience. It is placed in the area of Bosporus which makes it a meeting point of the business and trade hub for central Europe and Asia.


Istanbul is a city with rich culture and history, which is not surprising as it was named a European Capital of Culture in 2010. Throughout my stay I had a chance to visit many historical buildings and beautiful mosques, including the stunning Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and many other.. The most surprising for me was the landscape of the city, which is rather mountainous and I often found myself going up steep hills and then got rewarded with amazing views, same situation can be seen with cafes, restaurants and bars which were mostly located on the rooftops of buildings. Istanbul is also very well known for its high population of stray cats and I can only confirm that there is millions of cats everywhere in this city.

Surroundings (possible trips, ...)

The first trip that I took outside of the city led me to the nearby islands called the Princess Islands, it is the perfect place to go to for a nice beach day, that's not too far from the city. I visited the island called Heybeliada, it has nice and clean beaches and also very beautiful original architecture. The journey from Istanbul to Heybeliada takes about three hours by ferry, and it is very cheap and enjoyable. Then I also visited very famous inland area called Cappadocia, which is very well known for its beautiful and unique landscape formations, pottery, hot-air balloons, wine, horses and many other. In Cappadocia I spent one weekend and the journey by bus took me about 9 hours but it was definitely worth visiting.



Initially I had a problem with my employer because the company that I was supposed to be working for (ilke fantazi iplik) had some financial problems and they had to close the factory down. For that reason I was later transferred to another company which was also invested in the chemical engineering field. Luckily the new company accepted me quickly and everything went well from that point. So I ended up working for company called İnter Kauçuk ve Eva Ltd.Şti., which specializes in production of polymeric foam. It is a nice middle sized company with clients all over the world. The material that they produce is being used mainly in the manufacturing of shoes, diving gear, sport gear etc..

Work description

I was working in two departments of the company, at first a was working in the quality control laboratory where I learned everything about the execution of the quality control tests which included measurements of hardness, density, stretchiness and durability in heat and pressure of the produced materials. After two weeks in the laboratory I moved into the sales department where I was looking for potential customers, summarizing their contact information and also contacting them through email and providing further information about the company's products. The working hours were from 7 am until 5 pm with 1 hour lunch break, and the lunch was provided by the company.

Salary (sufficient for local conditions?)

For the salary I received 10 000 TL per month which is actually more then what I was supposed to get, but the employer took into consideration the inflation and general economic situation of the country. The amount was sufficient for the living expenses, such as accommodation, transportation and food but, as expected, it was not really enough to cover flight tickets, insurance and visa fees.

Language requirements

The language requirements for my internship were at a B2 level English, but it was not quite enough as most of the people in Turkey don't speak English so in order to communicate with most of my co-workers I had to use online translator. Same situation occurred in the shops and restaurants so I had to learn a little bit of Turkish language during my stay. But although most of the people didnt speak English, they were still very hospital and helpfull towards me.

Accommodation (price, who provided it)

I was accommodated in the ITU Campus girl's dormitory located in Maslak, which is quite close to the centre of the city. It was provided by IAESTE Turkey. Although the campus had strict rules it was very well maintained and had all necessary facilities. It had good security system so I felt safe at all times. In the dormitory we had kitchen, study room, laundry room etc. so it was very much sufficient for living. For one month in the dormitory I payed 2870 TL.

Social life

Meeting IAESTE members (pick-up at the airport, organized events...)

When I arrived sadly nobody came to pick me up from the airport because the girl that was supposed to come had some personal issues, so the IAESTE members described the journey from the airport to my accommodation through text messages and I managed to get there by myself. Local IAESTE members created a summer reception and they were planning trips and activities for all the interns every weekend and sometimes also throughout the week. The activities were a lot of fun, they involved sightseeing, clubbing, going out to restaurants and cafes, sports, watching movies, going to the beach etc... Overall I have to say that there was not a single moment in which I would feel bored because there was something planned all the time. We would always go out as a big group therefore we all got to know each other and I have made some really good friends from the ITU University but also from all around the world.

Meeting other foreign students

Throughout my internship I had an amazing chance to meet many amazing students from so many countries, for example India, Brazil, Kenya, Thailand, Romania, Tunisia and so many others. It was a great opportunity to learn about their culture, religion and also just about their different daily habits, mind-sets, food preferences, fashion etc.. It was also very eye-opening to hear about their struggles which were in many cases very different from mine and it made me appreciate my life in Europe so much more.

Sport and culture

Turkish people are very passionate about football and volleyball which I never realised before. Every Sundey there is a huge football match in the Istanbul's stadium and when you walk around the city in the Sunday afternoon you can see the fans dressed in their favourite team's football dresses, screaming and cheering for their team. It makes an amazing and fun atmosphere in the streets. There is also many Muslims in Istanbul so you can hear a prayer call five times a day. The prayer call will likely wake you up in the morning around 4:30 am and then say good night to you at around 10:30 pm. I got so used to hearing the prayer calls every day so after a while when I heard them, I knew what is the time according to it.

Food, local specialties

I was very excited to try the real Turkish kebab but I discovered that kebab in Europe is completely different than the traditional one. Turks put into durum kebab just pickles, meat, tomato and baked potato whereas in Europe you can see that they put in fresh vegetables, meat and dressings. I also tried the traditional "balik ekmek" which means fish sandwich in Galata bay, it is basically a bread filled with half of fish, onion, salad and mayonnaise. At first I was hesitant to try it because it looked a little bit strange but it tasted really delicious. I also tried so called "wet burger" which is essentially classic cheese burger dipped and soaked in tomato sauce and toasted afterwards. It may seem strange and to be honest it looked questionable at first but I ended up loving it and I still crave it and miss it very much. I have also eaten many dishes with lamb meat which is traditional type of meat that you can find everywhere in Turkey. What I find interesting is that people in Turkey eat everything with yogurt and yogurt drinks, specifically Ayran which is yogurt diluted with water and added salt. Also I can't forget to mention the Turkish breakfast, it is probably the most important meal for the locals and it traditionally includes fresh cheeses, olives, eggs, a lot of bread and "menemen" which is cooked tomatoes and peppers with scrambled eggs and cheese on top, and of course the Turkish tea.

Other information

Possibilites to communicate with the Czech Republic

For communication with local committee and summer reception I used whatsupp but for communication with Czech Republic I was using email. The responses were quick and efficient which I appreciated.

Recommendations for students who will go to the same place

To anyone coming to Istanbul in the summer be sure to bring some light clothes, sunscreen and be prepared for hot weather because the temperatures can get extremly high. Also be prepared that people here don't speak English so find a good treanslation app or learn some basic terms in Turkish language.

What not to forget with you

Do not forget to check beforehand if you need a visa and if so, what kind of visa do you need. Because at first, at my interview, I was told that I don't need visa to enter Turkey but that would be true only if my visit was just for tourist purposes. In the case of an internship I had to ask for working permit exception visa, which I didn't know and It was an unexpected expense and they took 30 days to issue. So be sure to check this.

Benefits of the internship

As the biggest benefit of the internship I would highlight the possibility to experience new work culture, which will open your mind to new approach for work and also open the door for many new opportunities. It may also make you appreciate what you have in your home country way more than you did before. And of course meeting people from around the world and making friends with them will make you realise that there is so many different approaches for the way people live their lives and what they hold as priorities, which will ultimately make you more open minded and understanding towards other races and nations.

Cooperation with IAESTE in the foreign country

Cooperation with the Turkish IAESTE was very nice, they helped me with all my visa documents, they were very helpful every time that any problem occurred and communication with them was very easy through whatsapp. Turkish people are very welcoming in general and this was also the case for the Turkish IAESTE, they were making sure that every intern is being taken good care of.

Overall experience with IAESTE

Overall I would rate the experience with IAESTE as good even though there were a few problems in the beginning of my internship, people from IAESTE were very helpful and eventually everything got solved.

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