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January 10, 2019

Starting my Gap Year at Roland Berger

Hi all, greetings from Amsterdam!

This week I spent a considerable amount of time thinking about how I can best describe my first months as a Roland Berger Gap Year Intern, which turned out to be ‘high-speed’.

On October 7th, my Gap Year literally started off high-speed: on a plane to Munich, where I would have my kick-off event with my fellow German and Dutch gap year interns. . This event marked the start of my 9 months as a Roland Berger Gap Year intern; three months at Roland Berger Amsterdam, three months at a start-up, and three months at Roland Berger Dubai.

Upon return, the HR team told me I was staffed on a project in Fiber to the Home industry. As I studied biomedical and health sciences, I did not know much more about home fibers except that it has something to do with the internet. A quick search on google told me that fiber-optic cables can be connected to homes to provide them with high-speed internet, up to 1000 Mbit/s. As the use of internet is changing so drastically, the Fiber to the Home industry is rapidly growing.

The speed of my own work, on the other hand, in the beginning was not too high, which is a vast understatement. I remember my third day in the Amsterdam office, I received some financial business planning training. While everyone was easily doing a modeling exercise in excel, I did not even know what an EBIT, kpiKPI or FTE was. Luckily, colleagues were always willing to help and with a few extra hours, I quickly got used to the business terminology. It is honestly both surprising and amazing how much one can learn in two months. So, a very slow start, but an extremely high-speed learning process.

As the project that I have been working on the past two months was done at the Amsterdam office instead of at the client, I got to see my colleagues every day. But even without this daily interaction, there is plenty of time to get to know your colleagues during the weekly vrijmibo's (Friday afternoon drinks), an intern dinner, pubquiz, and yearly Santa Claus event. Lastly, the JC/C weekend (a weekend for consultants, junior consultants and interns full of activities) turned out to be a great way to get to know everyone (and to make them remember me after my internship). During this weekend, we had a bootcamp, dinners, bowling, and did a trip through the meadows on a solex, a super fun high-speed activity!

So, a lot of high-speeds, but the internship itself is even more high-speed. It feels weird that only two weeks are left of my time in the Amsterdam office. Very sad to leave, but excited to kick-off my start-up period at felyx! To be continued!


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