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Veronika Janalíková, VSB - Technical University of Ostrava,ročník 2
About the country
Location of the place
The internship took place at Geesthacht, which is the city very close to Hamburg.
Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany. It is very close to the sea. You can see many canals of the river Elbe all around Hamburg. There is lots of things to do there. In fact, the internship was in Geesthacht, which is the city in a suburbs of Hamburg. It is small city, full of beautiful houses, restaurants, pubs. You can go easily to Hamburg by bus.
Surroundings (possible trips, ...)
In Hamburg you can do many things. I personally recommend to try some coffee place, where the coffee beans are made. Germany is a country with very good cafes, you cannot miss it. In the middle of Hamburg, there is a lake Alster. You can take a boat trip or just walk around the Alster. I also recommend Hafencity - a part of Hamburg, where you can see Elbe river, docks, but also monumental buildings,like Ephilharmonie, that is a new concert hall. The area around Hamburg is a really flat. It means that you cannot find any mountains there. But you can find something even better. Lovely cities, which worth he trip. If you want to go just for short one day trip, you can go to Bremen, Kiel or also to Berlin - German trains are really fast. For the weekend I would recommend Copenhagen, it is 5 hours by train, or the same duration to Amsterdam.
The internship took place in HZG - Helmholtz Zentum Geesthacht. It is one of the biggest company for material research in Germany.
HZG has many departments. My department was Magnesium Innovation Centre. I dealt with magnesium alloys. My work meant to study both - the macro and microstructure of magnesium alloys after casing, rolling and annealing processes by doing metallography work.
Salary (sufficient for local conditions?)
My salary was 650€ gross per month. For local conditions it was sufficient, if you pay just bus tickets, food and the rent. It is not sufficient for traveling, trips and visiting pubs.
In the company everyone can talk English. English is enough, but if you can talk also German, it is even better.
Accommodation (price, who provided it)
My accommodation was provided by the company HZG. I lived in a beautiful house in a village just next to Geesthacht. It is called Geesthacht - Grünhof. HZG is located on the edge of Geesthacht, so in fact I can walk just 10 minutes and I was at work. It was a three-floored house with own garden. In every floor there were 3 flats. Every floors has their own bathroom and kitchen. My room was very big with TV and wifi. The kitchen which I shared with two persons was fully equiped. The monthly rent was 279€.
Meeting IAESTE members (pick-up at the airport, organized events...)
IAESTE members were very kind during my stay in Hamburg. They picked me up at the train station, helped me with buying a new mobile card and bus ticket. They also helped me if I had any kind of problem during my internship. They prepared lots of activities in Hamburg for their interns.
Meeting other foreign students
During my internship in HZG, I met many foreign students. I worked with students from Korea, Spain, Mexico or Iran. With two foreign students I shared my flat. They all were very kind to me and helped me to not feel alone.
Sport and culture
In Hamburg you can do whatever culture or sport activity whatever you like. There are many cinemas and theatres, which are also in English. In Hamburg there is also one of the most famous German football club. But also in HZG I had a chance to try some sport - they provide some exercises and running activities. In Geesthacht there is a large fitness centre, but I did not use it.
Food, local specialties
During my internship I cooked for myself. But when I was in Hamburg, I tried currywurst, it is a traditional local food - a big sausage with curry sauce. Because Hamburg is very close to the sea, everyone should also try some sea food.
Possibilites to communicate with the Czech Republic
I communicated with the Czech Republic every day - with my parents, with my friends, with my university of with Czech IAESTE. It was very easy, because after work I still had plenty of time and I had internet connection at my room.
Recommendations for students who will go to the same place
If you will decide to go to the same place, you are the lucky person. Everything is so great there. I would definitelly recommend you to not be afraid and talk to other students from HZG. You will not feel lonely. During weekends go to Hamburg and enjoy some boat trip. If you want, you can take the train and go to Copenhagen. It is not so far and you will like it.
What not to forget with you
Dont forget to take a passport, a laptop, a notebook with a pen and photo camera.
Benefits of the internship
The main benefit of the internship was apply your knowledge in practice. I finally know how it looks like in a real company. Another benefit is, that I tried how it is to live in a foreign country. I impoved my English and learn basic German.
Cooperation with IAESTE in the foreign country
Cooperation with IAESTE in Germany was perfect. Everyone helped me with everything, I was in touch with them through Whatsapp every time.
Overall experience with IAESTE
I had really great experience with IAESTE. I recommend to try to go for an internship with IAESTE to everyone. It's worth it!
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