At the vocational school, we have the opportunity to obtain the additional qualification "European Business Management Assistant". This consists of several components, including a stay abroad of at least three weeks, and an internship abroad. It was immediately clear to me that the additional qualification would allow me to expand my knowledge and gain international experience, especially through the stay abroad.
The plan was to complete my internship abroad in the spring or summer of 2021, which unfortunately was not feasible due to covid. Fortunately, the opportunity arose in October 2021.
Kevin Mattheis, another trainee from my apprenticeship year, and I decided together to complete our four-week internship abroad at Flap Competence Center (FCC) in Budapest. The company is a joint venture between the Häfele Group and Kesseböhmer.
My preparations included, for example, obtaining approval and leave of absence for my stay, and also planning the stay on site and applying for Erasmus+ as financial support via an online portal. We received excellent support from FCC in the organization beforehand and on site.
We arrived by train and were accommodated in a student hotel selected by FCC in the middle of the city center. On the first day of work, we were picked up by a Hungarian colleague and then warmly welcomed by the company. After each department introduced itself to us, we were shown the external warehouse in Vecsés on the southeastern outskirts of Budapest and the plant extension in Ózd, which is almost 200km away. Our assignment was mainly in the order center, where we supported the friendly and helpful colleagues and were also allowed to perform independent tasks.
We both extremely enjoyed the varied work on site.
After work, as well as on weekends, we explored the capital. On the recommendations of our Hungarian colleagues, we visited the Parliament, the largest parliament building in Europe, and the Elisabeth observation tower on the outskirts of Budapest. The fastest way to reach this tower was by taking the Zugliget chairlift, and from here we had a wonderful view of the whole city. In good weather, we often walked along the Danube, which divides the whole city into the Buda and Pest sides, or on the impressive Margaret Island with its singing fountain, which many Budapest residents see as a retreat with great recreational character. On the internet we also found some bar and restaurant recommendations and sights like the Citadel on Gellért Hill or the Castle District, which we enjoyed exploring in our free time.
The national holiday "Feast of the Hungarian Revolution" on October 23rd was also within our period of stay. The whole city center was closed for a huge parade and celebrated extensively.
All in all, we were able to learn a lot about the local culture and gain many enriching experiences during our stay in Hungary.
In conclusion, Kevin and I can only say that it was definitely an unforgettable experience and we can highly recommend it. Take the opportunity!