Looking for a job? It takes more than just sending your CV to a company, says Emelda Obewu, one of Wittenborg University’s EuroBA students who recently did her internship at one of the leading hotel groups in Dubai: Rotana Hotels & Resorts.
Emelda, from Nigeria, started her IBA in Hospitality Management at Wittenborg in 2013 but soon switched to the EuroBA programme – a double degree hospitality programme Wittenborg offers with the University of Brighton in the UK. The EuroBA allows students to spend a part of their studies at one of Wittenborg’s partner institutes abroad.
According to Emelda she wanted to have work experience in the Middle East after spending one year of her studies at Wittenborg, then the ANGELL Academy in Freiburg, Germany, before going to the University of Brighton. Now she is wrapping up her programme at Wittenborg, hoping to get her degree at the university’s 2016 Summer Graduation Ceremony on 8 July.
“I found the Rotana Hotel Group online and then signed up to their career site. I also sent them my CV, but what really helped was that I followed up with a phone call. You have to call. It shows you are serious with your application and it expresses enthusiasm.” The company was impressed with her efforts and after a Skype interview she got the internship from February to June in 2015.
“While doing my internship I made sure that I was exposed to different aspects of the hotel industry – from operations to the kitchen." She even worked as a pastry chef! “It feels like I’ve grown a lot the past 3 years, mainly because of all the places I have experienced and people I have met. It contributes in different ways to your development, going to school in Europe and doing an internship in Dubai.”
Of all the countries she studied, she enjoyed Wittenborg the most. Why did she choose to study here? “I Google-searched for the best hospitality schools in the Netherlands and Wittenborg was one of the top names that came up. When I looked at its website I was impressed with the fact that it had a multicultural student community.”
Emelda says she would recommend the EuroBA programme to prospective students, but has some recommendations on how it can be improved. “It is a great course to do, but I think there could be better coordination between the partnering institutes. It would also be great if our supervisors could visit the students while they are abroad to check on their welfare. Being in a new country can be quite intimidating!”
Of all the participating countries she found the education system in Germany the most complicated. “Nonetheless, if you manage your time wisely, it is do-able.”
After graduation she would like to work in Europe’s hospitality sector for a few years before moving back to Nigeria.
by Anesca Smith
©Wittenborg University Press