My name is Alexander and I am a Environmental Sciences master student in the Environmental technology track. I found my internship at Arcadis through networking. After months of reaching out to people, I finally met someone who worked at Arcadis, and they put me in touch with a member of the water technology department. I met a few people at the company and finally managed to craft a place for myself.
I got in touch with the Student Career service during my internship search. Astrid gave me career planning advice and helped me finetune my CV. It was reassuring to know that the Student career service was there to assist me in my internship search.
The internship has been challenging so far, but I have grown to appreciate this. I have certainly been forced to improve my time management, organisation, and critical thinking. The team are kind, smart and many seem to have an almost zen like quality of staying calm despite having a sky high to do list. Most of the business at my office is carried out in Dutch, so my manager encourages me to speak it. My Dutch was not great before I started but has improved enormously. It has been tough, and it can be a daunting experience to start speaking to people in a professional environment in Dutch. However, in general, I think Dutch people appreciate the effort I am making (or at least I like to tell myself this!). Dutch isn’t too difficult really, and with consistency and perseverance, you can pick it up.
I would advise other students to proactively network, speak to professors, PHD students, ex Wageningen students, people in bars, at religious events etc. Be creative. Everyone knows someone, and eventually you will meet someone who might be able to help you. When you do find someone, ask for a 15-minute coffee chat: even the busiest person can find 15 minutes to talk. I believe that the internship search is an important part of the internship experience because it helps you develop your networking skills: which, as I have learnt over the last few months, is a crucial part of business.
Best of luck in your search. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions at Alexander.firstname.lastname@example.org