IfEU Alumni Newsletter 1|2021

Hello everyone!

Welcome to our first alumni newsletter of the Institute for European Urban Studies (IfEU) at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar!

Do you still want to hear from us? With this annual newsletter we would like to keep you updated about everything which is happening around the IfEU. This way we ensure that you can still receive all the latest IfEU news, alumni stories, events and networking opportunities. We are happy to have you as part of our IfEU family and hope that you would like to stay connected with us!

We are very excited to let you know about our upcoming alumni meet-up at the beginning of October this year and invite you all to join the event. Perhaps you meet some IfEU alumni you haven't seen in a while?

Here are also some further updates you’re definitely going to want to take a look at.

Mark your calendars

On the 1st of October 2021 at 3pm (CET) we will be hosting our first alumni meet-up. We are excited to hear what you’ve been up to since finishing your degree at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, but the meet-up also offers you the chance to exchange experiences and meet old student fellas. The meeting will be held online, so you have the chance to participate from wherever you are. You can join the meet-up via the following BigBlueButton-Link: https://meeting.uni-weimar.de/b/lyd-0ff-snb-dpv. We are looking forward to meeting you all in October!


Call for contributions

Come and share your experiences with other alumni from across the international IfEU alumni network! Send us an email (ifeu.studium@remove-this.archit.uni-weimar.de) till the 22nd of September 2021 that you are interested in offering a little presentation during the alumni meet-up where you can tell everything about your journey during the last years. If you can't make it on the 1st of October or you are still a little bit shy, you are also already invited to submit your portrait over the coming months for future alumni newsletter editions.

Meet Luiza Maciel Costa da Silva!

Luiza is one of our alumni and graduated last year with the MSc European Urban Studies. Find out more about her interests, experiences and challenges after graduation below.

Master’s degree at BUW: M.Sc. European Urban Studies

Graduation: 2020

Master’s thesis topic: Smart cities and mobility hubs

Luiza's alumni portrait

What are you doing at the moment?

I am currently working as a Coordinator at SYSTRA, a multinational consulting company in the field of transportation. I work in the office located in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, which is my home town. I used to work for this company before I started the EUS program, but my position was as an Analyst. Therefore, nowadays I have more responsibilities and I lead a small team. We develop transportation studies for Brazilian cities and metropolitan areas.

How was your transition from being a student to your current position?

After finishing the EUS program, I was hired by a small consulting company in Germany. The experience was ok, but I struggled a lot for being in a new town during the pandemic, as it was hard to make friends and find myself in the city. Moreover, I did not feel like I could give my best in the job, as my German knowledge is still quite limited. Due to all those reasons, I have decided to return to Brazil and look for a job here. As I had previously worked for SYSTRA, my ex-bosses contacted me and offered me a job.

What have you learned during your studies that benefit you now in your working life the most?

Improvement in organization skills, English language, reading, and writing. Moreover, while writing my thesis I did a lot of research on smart mobility, and I am currently able to apply this knowledge in my job.

Do you have any further tips and remarks for current (international) students joining the job market in Germany?

As I had a short experience in the German job market, my recommendation is: learn the German language and practice it as much as you can! I think this is the main challenge for a foreigner that decides to work in Germany. Moreover, before you accept the job, make sure you understand the tasks you will be able to perform and that you like them. Those are lessons that I have learned the hard way. :)

What was the project you were most passionate about in the past years?

Being a tutor for the Bauhaus Summer School in 2019 was a very short project, but still very important for me and I still miss it and all the people I have met during this experience.

Can you tell anything about the most influential parts of your study experience at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar (e.g. interests, courses, GRP, extracurricular activities)?

The GRP was of great importance for me! I grew a lot during this period, being proactive, researching on my own, interviewing people that I had never seen before in a strange country. It was a challenge, but the highlight of the program in my opinion! The opportunity to be an Erasmus exchange student and benefit from it (network, scholarship, contacts, uni enrolment) was also great. Concerning the courses, my favorite ones were Urban Sociology, Welcome to Weimar, Research Methods, and the Study Project in Gelsenkirchen.

Which advice would you give your younger student-self if you could?

I would probably tell myself to take the German lessons seriously and to be brave and enjoy this unique opportunity to talk in German with locals as much as possible.

In what ways are you still connected to the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar and your course peers?

Unfortunately, I am not much connected to anyone anymore - I just follow them on Instagram. However, I would love to know more about how they are doing. Hopefully, we will be able to meet again one day. It was strange and sad finishing the course without seeing any of the classmates or celebrating with anyone.

What are our doctoral candidates involved with at the institute?

After researching a topic extensively, junior researchers aspire to share their findings with the world. The work should not simply rust over one’s own shelves, but the process of publishing includes an extensive reflection of a PhD student's own work and approach.

Meet one of our PhD students Ruweida Aljabali who explains how she worked on publishing her research results - from the search for and development of a research topic to methodology and publication strategies, the interview gives an insight into the research process of a doctoral student in Weimar.

Ruweida Aljabali is writing her PhD at the Chair of Urban Studies and Social Research directed by Prof. Eckardt. The interview was conducted by Charlotte Polak, alumni at the Institute for European Urban Studies in October 2020. You can see the whole video at the IfEU’s webpage.

Are you also interested in doing a PhD? You can find out more about an individual PhD at the IfEU here!

Thank you for reading!

We hope you’ve liked our first alumni newsletter and we are excited to see you at our alumni meet-up on the 1st of October. Do you have news to share? Let us know!

Want to stay connected?

Do you want to stay connected and receive further alumni newsletters in the future? In case you are not already a former European Urban Studies student, please contact us via ifeu.studium@remove-this.archit.uni-weimar.de to be added to the mailing list. Please let us also know, if you would like to unsubscribe from the alumni mailing list.