In this article, I make an attempt to compile a few frequently asked questions (FAQs) that I have received from applicants in the past (and are likely to remain frequent in years to come as well).
Part 1 on admission process and part 2 on German language skills can be found in the blog.
Q from applicant : Which course should I choose ? ASM or DDM ?
A: Ask yourself what you want to pursue. ASM is more along the lines of Control Engineering while DDM is extensively on physical structures and materials. Write on a piece of paper your skills, interests, career plan 5-10 years ahead. Read course module information from the University website or get in touch with students to know about what is taught in a subject if needed (It is fine if much of these seem threatening and unfamiliar. That’s the reason you are applying. To learn them). Explore and gather as much information yourself before seeking help on this.
Q: Does work/internship experience help ? Is it difficult for a fresher ?
A: Experience always helps, especially if relevant, to understand the state-of-the-art technology, the challenges in bringing an idea to reality, the necessity to learn something, etc. A fresher might have to then rely on others’ experiences (friends, internet blogs, videos) to know terminologies and how industry & technology has evolved. At times, experience can subconsciously make one relate everything to past instances and might narrow down one’s thinking whereas a fresher might think on broader terms.
While searching for jobs/interns, interviews often revolve around projects or previous experience. So as a fresher perhaps a couple of projects could make some difference. The interviewers might be interested about your responses and use it to assess your confidence in the subject. Another interesting approach would be to substantially increase your German competence (say B2 or more) thereby making your profile stand out in applicant processes.
Mere claims such as ‘I am hard working’, ‘I am a team player’, without any past credentials/accolades to show for, is not recommended
Q: About the teaching faculty at Hochschule Esslingen
Almost all professors have rich professional and/or research experience of 15-20+ years. Some courses have visiting professors from the industry too. In general, very approachable, interactive and supportive for e.g. in search of/during the Master Thesis. Teaching styles may vary so do individual learning experiences. Outside the classroom, it is possible to interact with many professors at the Graduate School faculty celebrations (Christmas and Grill party). One professor also brought some chocolates to class for Christmas.
Q: Opportunities after graduation
A: Technology has given us something that goes by the name ‘Internet’. Read the industry news, German job market and research trends extensively. In general, there has been a high demand for Engineers in the past (and likely would remain so). A candidate trained in the right skills with the right attitude is sure to land a job. Hochschule Esslingen is ranked among the best in Germany for its Mechanical Engineering program in German and has in general a fine reputation
Three points to bear in mind
- Save a bit of the future for surprise and chance. That is part of the fun. There is no suspense and thrill in knowing all that is to know this very moment. You are likely to figure out a lot of things along the way yourself.
- Patient, persistent, sincere and unflinching efforts towards your goal. There is no substitute for this. Some may make it sound easier, some tougher. In hindsight, for me it was challenging yet enjoyable.
- Pursue something by choice. And make it daring the consequences. Circumstances and factors (time, age, financial, family) are numerous and different for every individual. Learning from others’ experience is wise. Still one’s decision has to be one’s own. Remember that one is repeatedly likely to find oneself having to choose between two equally lucrative options. (P.S: A rather crude approach in such cases. Decisions are often already made instinctively by our subconscious mind though not always evident to us on the outside. So if in a dilemma, toss a coin. As it goes up and then starts to make its way down, the subconscious choice surfaces. Go for it. It works)