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      June 01, 2023

      Embracing Challenges and Building Connections: A Student's Journey in Continental's Makers Garage

      While pursuing my master’s degree in economics and management, I decided to look for working student positions that can complement the study program. As a student, you are often ready for any positions just to get your foot in the door. Nonetheless, I was hoping to explore a new challenge of working in a dynamic start-up environment, which eventually led me to Continental’s Makers Garage.

      Joining Continental as a business development working student honestly seemed like a daunting task. After all, it is a huge organization. That, as I thought at the time, could mean that a student like myself would be somewhere low on the priority list. Add to that the worry of managing to combine working 20 hours with attending lectures and you have yourself a recipe for feeling overwhelmed before even officially joining the team.

      Having individual meetings with the other students and full-time employees over the course of my first week definitely did calm the initial jitters. Naturally, there was a steep learning curve and there is always something to get acquainted with, especially being new to the realm of digital solutions for tires. However, it was a relief to discover that my experience wasn’t unique, but rather a common thread among all the other students when they first started their journey. This uniting factor certainly simplifies the integration process and helps you build a solid professional network.

      I can’t necessarily say that my working days follow a particular pattern. As cliché as it may sound, each day and project bring new challenges. While the workflow may take some getting used to, being a team of students from various fields ultimately allows us to learn to efficiently communicate and exercise mutual support. Each person enriches a project by offering their unique perspective and experience from their domain.

      The field of digital solutions for tires is still rapidly evolving, so it is a captivating experience to witness firsthand the development and global rollouts of cutting-edge solutions. Nevertheless, the projects we get are not constrained to the department. I could one day be working on a cross-functional, international process optimization project and then move onto discussing a new business case with regional experts.

      Now for combining work with lectures. Luckily, the flexibility offered at the Makers Garage allows me to work from home when necessary and build my work schedule around the lectures. As a result, I can find the right balance between being at the office, studying for exams and enjoying the sun in Hannover.