Hallo Sergio. Thanks for finding the time for this interview with us today. Where do you come from and how long have you been a member of the ALTEN team?
I come from Spain and have been working as an Engineering Consultant at ALTEN GmbH’s premises in Munich since December 2019.
In which department do you work at the customer’s?
Motor and Drivetrain Development.
What is the typical working day like for you and what sort of tasks are you assigned as an Engineering Consultant?
My daily routine involves activities in connection with long term projects that all comprise specific tasks to do with motors, peripherals, cooling systems and drivetrains. They are all important and relevant to current developments relating to construction, type approval and finding solutions to the various problems that arise. I am expected not only to have the main technical automotive know how but also to be ambitious, conscientious and work both effectively and efficiently. Also of considerable relevance is the capacity to collaborate closely with clients. This is essential so that we can continually ensure we are meeting requirements and achieving targets accurately and in good time.
The assignments we Engineering Consultants have are always interesting and close contact with clients means that our work is very diverse. The best thing is that I always learn something new in each project I tackle.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
What I like best is the fact that as a design and type approval engineer, I get to work directly with the motors, drivetrains and peripherals. I thus have the opportunity to use the knowledge I have acquired and learn a lot as well. It is a real privilege to be allowed to actually have hands-on contact with machinery and components and I consider this the highlight of my time at ALTEN.
What did you study?
I completed my four-year Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering course in Spain.
Why did you decide to participate in the V.I.E. international voluntary program? And why did you choose to come to ALTEN?
As a foreign graduate, the V.I.E. (Volontariat International en Entreprise) program offers me the opportunity to work abroad for two years and in this connection, I decided I’d go to Germany. I’ve always wanted to work at an international corporation active in the automotive sector, such as ALTEN, as a member of such a program. The benefits of the V.I.E. program are that I gain experience in the profession and am able to extend my knowledge and skills. Thanks to being involved in a wide range of different projects I have been able to significantly add to my know how of and expertise in the various important related technologies.
ALTEN and the V.I.E program have enabled me to explore very topical and interesting crucial aspects of the automotive sector in connection with our clients and work on and develop these.
What attracted you to Germany and Bavaria so that you decided to come and stay here after?
What I like about Germany are the country, the natural surroundings, the culture and the people. Munich is, after all, a very attractive place to live. There are so many leisure activities and events on offer and the weather is really not bad.
What have you so far acquired through the V.I.E. program and working for ALTEN that will benefit you in your future professional career?
In my time at ALTEN to date and through the collaboration with clients I have acquired considerable experience in how to provide advice. I have also acquired important insights into and knowhow with working with motors and drivetrains, whereby the emphasis for me has been on development, problem- solving and homologation testing. This has helped me extend my practical understanding of these interesting subjects and actually apply my theoretical knowledge in the many different aspects of my work.
Thanks to my time at ALTEN, all my expertise in these fields is now well-founded, more detailed and thoroughly coordinated. As I have been able to work on so many projects and in different departments, I’ve been able gain specialised skills – something that is crucial when it comes to applying for a job at present.
What would your advice be to other graduates who are just starting out as interns on the V.I.E. program or are considering participating?
Just do it, it’s absolutely worth it.
I’ve found it to be fascinating and rewarding – in terms of gaining practical experience of working, acquiring new expertise and the development of my personal and professional skills. And I would like to urge anyone who has just started to take full advantage of everything this program offers. Learn as much you can, both new skills and new insights. By working at ALTEN, you’ll be able to extend your horizons.