CoSEM Alumni Stories
WORKING AS TU DELFT INTERNATIONAL GRADUATES IN EUROPE
Hi, I’m Alexa. I’m 24 years old. I live in The Hague. After completing my bachelor’s in Science, Business, and Innovation in Amsterdam, I wanted to learn about digital innovation. And then, I saw the CoSEM programme at TU Delft and thought it would be perfect for me because I like to be the bridge between the digital world and its real application. CoSEM is perfect for me because it has the I&C track that gives a broader perspective. I also did my specialisation in Cyber Security because it’s been a hot topic. And I believe nowadays every company is an IT company because almost everything is digital and thus more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. So, cyber security is super important if we want to digitise everything.
Now I work at Capgemini Engineering, a global innovation engineering consultancy firm. My first assignment at this company is about industrial automation of poultry processing. What I’m doing with this project is testing the functionality of a software platform that monitors the processing machine by using data simulation.
I think finding a job in the Netherlands as CoSEM graduates were quite easy, but it depends on where we want to work. Some companies have big selection qualifiers. In general, I think it’s easy when we come from TU Delft and study a programme like CoSEM. Especially, since CoSEM was ranked number 4 on the “Most Attractive Studies for Employers” ranking in 2020. People now look for the specific skills that we have because we did this master’s programme. We have such a broad range of skills that can end up anywhere. We have built those skills that allow us to look at projects and jobs in different directions. That’s what I really like a lot about CoSEM. I have the right mindset and the right skills to adjust to different situations and become very flexible.
Another thing I really like about CoSEM is the practical projects that we had, especially those in the I&C track. It was a division between the skills that we learned from the lectures that we can directly apply in real-life cases. It was very futuristic and innovative. Also, it was not only we learned from the books but also we directly applied it in business cases. It’s now easier to convert my knowledge to the projects I’m working on. I think the CoSEM programme is very well-designed.
Hi, I’m Mustika. I came from Indonesia in 2018 to take this CoSEM study. I took the energy track with the Advanced Modelling, Gaming, and Design specialisation. I also took extra credits from the Honours Programme, so I can have more modelling experience. I’m living in Rotterdam. My office is in Leiden, but I work mostly from my home in Rotterdam.
I feel that I discover myself here. The vast choices of study in CoSEM had allowed me to understand myself better (what I want and what I’m good at). This understanding gives me confidence to move forward with my career.
I think finding a job for an international graduate wasn’t a problem. The challenge is to find a job for non-Dutch (and other European languages) speakers. Quite some jobs require fluency in Dutch. Even if they are not, some also mentioned that knowledge in Dutch is preferable. This translates that if the company needs to choose between a Dutch speakers and non-Dutch speakers, they will choose ones who are fluent in Dutch. I found most jobs that need less Dutch fluency are jobs with more technicality involved. But even in this kind of position, motivation to learn Dutch is quite an advantage. Maybe also because people think that if the graduates learn Dutch, this shows their intention to stay and to build their career in the Netherlands. I don’t think that Dutch is mandatory, but definitely an advantage.
I like my current working environment in the Netherlands. People are open, tolerant, and punctual. I also like how the organisation is transparent and flexible. I don’t have any problem being an international employee. My team consists of only 20% Dutch and 80% international. So, I don’t really feel like an international employee. Everyone is an international employee. However, in an environment where Dutch speaker is predominant, things can be quite different. If my colleagues are more comfortable to speak in Dutch, they tend to leave me out of non-business conversation (e.g., lunch talk). And if your client is Dutch and not comfortable to speak English, this might also create problem to your ability to work.