"My participation at the Mentoring Program was a highly valuable experience. The professional training helped me to reflect and identify my strengths, inner drivers and career aspirations. Based on this knowledge, I decided to accompany a crowdfunded technology startup in its exciting initial phase. I am very grateful for the unique insight into the working environment, the gained experience and the resulting network."
"I took the chance offered by MAINZ to attend all workshops I was interested in. Sometimes I asked myself whether I am spending too much time on courses instead of working in the lab, especially at the end of my PhD studies. Yet, only one year after my PhD defense, I can see how the seminars provide benefits not only for my professional but also for my personal life. The fact that the workshops were attended by students from different natural sciences was of particular benefit. It opened opportunities to discuss my research with experts in different fields who gave valuable input on my project from another point of view."
"As a member of MAINZ I had the opportunity to broaden my horizon by taking soft skill classes and talking to students with different technical and cultural backgrounds.
Especially the mentMAINZ mentoring program provided an opportunity to get insights into industrial R&D and how to approach job hunting.
In big part thanks to this program, I was able to find a job at BASF where I can use the skills obtained during my PhD while maintaining the interdisciplinary exchange started in the graduate school."
From a scientific perspective, I have very much benefited from the opportunity to visit conferences and summer schools in America, Japan and France: at such places, I have enjoyed the inspiring atmosphere and the interaction with other researchers. The ideas and knowledge, stemming from such journeys, have contributed to the progress of my Ph.D.
On a personal level, I have greatly profited from the mentoring program and the soft skill courses. At the beginning, I underestimated their significance and value. However, I quickly came to realize that I did not frequently and systematically analyze my current situation as well as future challenges – until I had become part of MAINZ. Ever since, I have started to more consciously and critically reflect on my decisions, which has crucially helped me to decide upon my future career path.
The annual seminars and other meetings organized by the MAINZ office or students fostered the interaction with other students from different disciplines within the wide field of materials science, which I have come to enjoy a whole lot, making the time in the graduate school a thrilling and versatile experience."